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Title KLIPING BERITA: SBY issues decree to fight child abuse
Edition The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Headlines | Sat, June
Call Number
Author(s) Ina Parlina
Subject(s) Sexual and Reproductive
Series Title
Language English
Publisher The Jakarta Post
Publishing Year 2014
Publishing Place Jakarta
Collation Page. 2

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has issued a Presidential Instruction (Inpres) outlining the government’s measures to better protect children from sexual abuse.

The Presidential Instruction No. 5/2014, which was signed by Yudhoyono on June 11, ordered a number of ministers and heads of state institutions, as well as local leaders, to work together to handle and prevent such crimes.

The move came after Yudhoyono called for a nationwide movement to protect children from sexual abuse. In recent weeks, a number of sexual abuse incidents involving children have surfaced, including a high profile case of an alleged gang rape of a 6-year-old kindergarten pupil at Jakarta International School (JIS).

Yudhoyono has on several occasions held Cabinet meetings to discuss potential responses, and has even invited the Indonesian Child Protection Commission (KPAI) to offer policy recommendations.

In the instruction, Yudhoyono ordered the education and culture minister to impose harsh penalties on schools, teachers and staff where sexual abuse against children occurred. The ministry was also tasked with improving religious education and incorporating compulsory reproductive health education as part of the national curriculum.

Yudhoyono also ordered the religious affairs minister to raise awareness among religious figures and organizations about sexual violence so that they could play a bigger role in preventing such crimes.

In addition to providing swift and effective physical and psychological health care, Yudhoyono said that the Health Ministry must work to raise awareness among health professionals about their obligation to inform police about allegations of sex crimes against children.

The President, who has two grandchildren, also urged parents and other family members to provide the best parenting and supervision for their children.

Another recent incident that grabbed national attention involved the case of Andri Sobari, 24, who has allegedly molested at least 110 young boys since January.

The police said that Andri reportedly offered his victims, mostly young boys aged between 8 and 13, between Rp 25,000 (US$2.11) and Rp 50,000 before taking them to private places where the sex abuse
took place.

Last month, the police recorded nearly 100 sexual abuse cases involving children. Despite allegedly involving 110 children, the Andri case was counted as a single incident.

According to the police, of the 18 provinces where crimes were reported, Riau Islands topped the list with 64 cases, followed by South Kalimantan with 13 cases and Yogyakarta with seven cases. Last year, the police investigated 1,635 child sexual abuse cases.

In the instruction, Yudhoyono, who has aired hopes that the House of Representatives would quickly amend the 2002 Child Protection Law to impose harsher punishment on child predators so as to deter future crimes, also ordered the law and human rights minister to speed up the drafting of the regulations on child protection.

Lawmakers had previously agreed to revise the law — which imposes between three and 15 years’ imprisonment, or between Rp 60 million and Rp 300 million in fines for those who sexually assault children — in the upcoming House session.

Yudhoyono also told the attorney general and the National Police chief to prosecute child sex crimes quickly, and to institute heavy sentences upon those convicted. He also said that immigration authorities must accommodate request from the police and Attorney General’s Office for travel bans on convicted persons.

Under the instruction, the coordinating people’s welfare minister is tasked with coordinating the drafting of all policies related to preventive measures, while the coordinating political, legal and security affairs minister will become the coordinator of all policies related to law enforcement.

Moreover, local leaders, including governors, regents and mayors, were told to immediately draft policies and blueprints, as well to allocate funds from local budgets for implementation.

National Commission for Child Protection (Komnas PA) chairman Arist Merdeka Sirait welcomed the instruction, urging the ministries to immediately draft the implementing regulations in line with the instruction in order to make it functional.

“It is important that the instruction has preventive measures, but they will only be effective if the ministries draft the implementing regulations. If not, it [the instruction] will only be lip service,” Arist said.
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