Jakarta (ANTARA) - Minister of Law and Human Rights, Yasonna Hamonangan Laoly, has expressed the hope that the revision to Law No. 35 of 2009 on Narcotics will help address prison issues in Indonesia, particularly overcapacity.

"The Narcotics Law revision is currently under consideration by the House of Representatives (DPR RI). (The revision) is expected to help relieve prison overcapacity issues," Laoly noted after inaugurating 39 ministry officials here on Friday.

Inmates implicated in drug-related crimes are filling up prisons, leading to overcrowding, which, in turn, is creating more issues, he pointed out.

The current Law No. 35 of 2009 does not clearly define drug addicts, drug abusers, and victims of drug abuse, the minister noted.

Laoly, who is a professor of Criminology at the Indonesian Police Science College (STIK), opined that the handling of drug addicts, drug abusers, and victims of drug abuse must focus on the rehabilitation aspect based on a comprehensive assessment mechanism.

"Meanwhile, drug dealers could remain penalized with a hefty sentence as a deterrent effect," he suggested.

Besides enumerating penalties for money laundering crimes perpetrated by drug dealers, the revision to the Narcotics Law will make a distinction between drug users and drug dealers, thereby preventing multiple interpretations in case handling, the minister informed.

Laoly also reminded the recently-inaugurated officials to continue improving their performance and public services at the agencies where they are serving. Ministry officials must have initiative, the ability to innovate, and provide solutions to the challenges that they are facing, he added.

"Firmly hold the trust and responsibility that has been entrusted to you," the minister remarked.

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Translator: M Zulfikar, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Suharto
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