Indonesia's House of Representatives asks for special police guard

Indonesia's House of Representatives asks for special police guard
Indonesian voters marching to the parliament during an election stopped by security personnel.

The House of Representatives is proposing the establishment of a special police task force to be stationed at its compound in Senayan, Jakarta.

In a draft document obtained by The Jakarta Post, the House argued that it needed the task force, called the Legislative Police, to increase security in the area in order to ensure lawmakers could perform their roles well.

The draft describes that the new task force should be headed by a one-star police general and would be equipped with 1,194 personnel.

In the long term, the House hopes that a presidential decree and a National Police chief decree would be issued within five years, which would place the task force under the National Police's Security Maintenance Agency (Baharkam).

The head of the House's Ways and Means Committee (BURT), Golkar Party lawmaker Roem Kono, confirmed the plans on Monday and said that the proposed Legislative Police would be a similar operation to the Presidential Security Detail (Paspampres), which has the strength of around 2,500 military personnel and is led by two-star military general, Maj. Gen. Andika Perkasa. Paspampres is responsible for securing not only the President and Vice President, but also any visiting foreign heads of state.

"This is all just part of modernizing the House and we want to improve every aspect of it," he said.

Although he would not disclose the budget outlined for the new system as it is still a draft proposal, the House's 2015 budget for its current internal security personnel is Rp 18.1 billion (S$2 million).

Roem also clarified that the current internal security stationed at the House, mostly from the Jakarta Police, would not be let go after the Legislative Police was formed, but would work together with the new system.

National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. Anton Charliyan said that the police force must consider the proposal seriously, but that it was ultimately up to the force's Baharkam to decide whether such an increase in security was necessary at the House.

"Baharkam will ultimately consider the pros and cons of the proposed system and decide whether or not such an increase would be effective. Baharkam will also judge how many police personnel are actually needed [at the House]," he said, adding that Baharkam would most likely discuss the issue with the Jakarta Police, which currently organises the House's security.

Anton explained that the police force was still waiting for an official proposal from the House.

Anton also could not yet confirm whether the police were ready to supply 1,194 officers for the House.

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