Deputy Governor to shut Jakarta’s iconic Stadium nightclub

Deputy Governor to shut Jakarta’s iconic Stadium nightclub

JAKARTA - Jakarta's iconic Stadium nightclub, known for its 24-hour partying and high tolerance of drug-taking and transactional sex, is likely to see its decades-long operation come to an end after the city administration pledged to shut it down for good.

Deputy Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama said on Sunday that he could no longer tolerate the operation of the club after a policeman, identified only as JVG, 22, died on Friday morning following a suspected drug overdose.

"We've ordered the Jakarta administration's Tourism Agency to immediately close Stadium. The incident cannot be tolerated," he said.

The administration, according to Ahok, had frequently warned Stadium's management to put an end to all drug-related activities, but it had never responded positively.

Ahok said that he had contacted the National Police detectives chief Comr. Gen. Suhardi Alius to investigate allegations that the club had connections to a drug-trafficking network.

The Jakarta Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Rikwanto said JVG was originally stationed with the Minahasa Police, in North Sulawesi.

"He [JVG] partied in Jakarta as he had four days leave after taking part in a course in Megamendung, Bogor, West Java," said Rikwanto.

"The victim died in Husada Hospital in West Jakarta after he was ushered out of the club at around 16.30 by his friend Brigadier MM."

The Jakarta Police are still investigating how the drugs were supplied to and eventually consumed by JVG and three of his friends.

Stadium is reportedly owned by veteran nightclub businessman Rudi Rajamas, who also controls the Malioboro Hotel and Spa in Central Jakarta, Sumo Spa in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta and the newly opened Exodus nightclub in Kuningan, South Jakarta.

With its operation dating back to the 1990s, Stadium is an internationally acclaimed club, playing mostly trance music. Aside from a huge dance floor, it also has dozens of private rooms, equipped with karaoke sets, available for rent around the clock.

The overdose incident involving the police officer is not the first drugs-related fatality to have been linked to Stadium.

In January 2012, for example, Afriyani Susanti hit 13 pedestrians, killing nine, while driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol in Gambir, Central Jakarta.

The drugs taken by Afriyani were allegedly bought from an individual inside the nightclub. The police did not expand their investigation into the origin of the drugs.

Afriyani was sentenced to 15 years' imprisonment in August last year for reckless driving and an additional four years for drug abuse.

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