Sidoarjo, East Java (ANTARA) - The Law and Human Rights Ministry has allocated a budget of Rp4.1 billion for a legal aid program for poor people in East Java, which will be distributed through 65 verified legal aid providers (PBH).

Acting head of the ministry's East Java Regional Office, Wisnu Nugroho Dewanto, advised legal aid providers to utilize the budget well.

"The Rp4.1-billion budget will be divided into two sectors, one for litigation assistance of Rp3.4 billion and the rest for non-litigation assistance. There are 65 PBHs that have the right to take advantage of the budget, and the value will depend on the accreditation of each PBH," he explained in Surabaya on Saturday.

Currently, there are 48 PBHs with C accreditation, 14 PBHs with B accreditation, and three PBHs with A accreditation, he said.

"We will conduct an evaluation every three months. If they do not meet the target then the budget will be shifted to a legal aid provider that has better performance," Dewanto added.

He said the PBHs have signed a contract and performance agreement with the ministry's East Java Regional Office.

The step has been taken to optimize the distribution of legal aid budget for the poor by the ministry, he explained.

According to Dewanto, his team has implemented a reward and punishment system for the management of the legal aid budget for the poor.

"Everything has been automated through the Legal Aid Database Information System Application (SIDBanKum). The data on budget absorption and PBH performance can be checked in real-time," he pointed out.

Therefore, after the agreement signing, he urged PBH leaders or directors to immediately carry out their activities, in accordance with their rights and authority for helping the poor facing legal troubles.

Legal assistance is an effort to protect the citizens and guarantee their human rights as well as access to justice and equality before the law, Dewanto said.

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Translator: Indra S, Kenzu T
Editor: Suharto
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