Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Supreme Court agrees to review Poso 3 case

The Jakarta Post, Palu, Central Sulawesi/Jakarta

The Supreme Court has finally agreed to a second case review for three men on death row in Poso, Central Sulawesi, although officials say its outcome would not change their sentence for masterminding sectarian violence in 2001.

Supreme Court spokesman Djoko Sarwoko announced Monday that a five-member panel of judges would deliberate the second case review of Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu and Dominggus da Silva, three Christians accused of orchestrating the murders of local Muslims.

The Attorney General's Office has issued a stay of execution, citing unfinished preparations, but it has denied the order was connected to widespread protests demanding the authorities investigate other suspected leaders of the strife.

The justices will be headed by Mariana Sutadi, with members including Djoko, Timur B. Manurung, Harifin A. Tumpa and Paulus Effendi Lotulung.

"Because this is a second case review, the committee members are different from the first one," Djoko said.

He said that although the Criminal Code stated there could only be one case review, judges could not deny a request for a second because there was no relevant law or regulation. He referred to a recent case review in the election of the mayor of Depok in Greater Jakarta, which was finally granted by the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court Justice Bagir Manan earlier this month turned down the defendants' requests for a second case review, saying that all legal procedures had been exhausted. The court had upheld the verdict of the Palu High Court, and President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono had rejected the defendants' request for clemency.

However, the Supreme Court's decision does not change their death sentence, Attorney General's Office spokesman Masyhudi Ridwan said. He also referred to the above Criminal Code procedure and said his office would not be able to accept any new ruling.

"So we're still preparing the execution, not delaying it," he told The Jakarta Post.

Djoko acknowledged that the law must be upheld, but said a stay of execution was the most appropriate course of action.

"It's for the best that there be a stay of execution until the case review is settled. I can't imagine (what would happen) if the case review was granted and the execution had already been carried out."

Catholic scholar Franz Magnis-Suseno visited the convicts Monday in Palu prison, saying he favored the abolition of capital punishment.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Tibo links synod council to Poso attacks

Ruslan Sangaji, The Jakarta Post, Palu

Fabianus Tibo, one of three men on death row for their roles in the attacks that killed some 200 Muslims six years ago in Poso, Central Sulawesi, has accused the Synod Council of the Central Sulawesi Christian Church (GKST) of involvement in the violence.

"Most people in Poso know about the GKST's involvement in the violence. It is very strange the police did not investigate them," Tibo told journalists Saturday at the prison in Palu, Central Sulawesi, where he is awaiting execution.

He claimed that whenever members of the council went to "war", they gathered in front of the church in Tentena district near Poso to ask for a blessing.

"Several priests who were also synod council members prayed for them," he said.

Tibo demanded police arrest the members of the GKST he accused of being involved in the violence, and release him and Dominggus da Silva and Don Marinus Riwu, who were also sentenced to death for the attacks.

The head of the synod council, the Reverend Renaldy Damanik, denied his organization's involvement in the sectarian violence. However, he acknowledged that some rogue elements within the council might have played a role in masterminding the violence.

"The job of the synod council is dealing with our congregation. We promote peace in the world and campaigned to stop the bloodshed in Poso," Renaldy said.

When Tibo was arrested in 2001, he accused former synod council leader Agustina Lumentut of involvement in the attacks.

Tibo told authorities that Agustina had asked him not to reveal the council's involvement in the conflict.

He claims Agustina promised he would be released in three days if he did not tell investigators about the council's role in the violence. However, Tibo was sentenced to death in 2001.

Agustina subsequently moved away from Tentena and passed away in 2003.

Tibo also told authorities several other Poso figures were involved in the conflict, including Paulus Tungkanan, Erick Rombot, Limpadeli and Christian Red Troop commander Angki Tungkanan.

They were seen at the scenes of the attack, Tibo claimed. "All of these people are still in Tentena and are active members of the synod council board and the Sintuwu Maroso Youth Force."

The Poso Three, as the three men on death row have come to be known, earlier accused 16 men, including some of these local figures, of masterminding the religious violence.

Speaking at the same time, Da Silva urged the police to arrest former Poso regency secretary Yahya Pattiro for his alleged role in the unrest.

"When an attack occurred, he (Yahya) made a call to the GKST church. I answered the phone and he told me he was looking for (Angki) Tungkanan, who was not present," he said.

Da Silva said Yahya then asked him to tell Tungkanan to block off the road to military troops being deployed from Palopo, South Sulawesi.

He said this proved Yahya's involvement in the conflict, because he was giving orders to the Red Troop commander.

Heri Mengkawa, who is serving a 12-year jail sentence for his involvement in the Poso violence, also alleged Yahya played a role in the conflict.

The former regency secretary has denied on a number of occasions any involvement in the violence.

Central Sulawesi Police chief Comr. Gen. Oegroseno said the authorities had run into trouble trying to find evidence that the 16 men identified by Tibo and the two other convicts had masterminded the Poso attacks.

However, he promised to follow up on all allegations and question those identified by Tibo.***

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Police officer named suspect in Poso shooting

Ruslan Sangadji, The Jakarta Post, Palu

The Central Sulawesi Police have named a police officer a suspect in last year's nonfatal shooting of two female high school students in the conflict-torn city of Poso.

Provincial police chief Brig. Gen. Oegroseno confirmed that an officer, whom he identified only as a first brigadier with the initials IL, had been named a suspect and was being detained for questioning.

"It's true. We have named him a suspect and have held him in prison since Tuesday," Oegroseno said Wednesday.

He said that if the officer was found to have been involved in the shooting of the schoolgirls, identified as Ivon Natalia and Siti Nuraini, both 18, he would be given the heaviest punishment possible.

Oegroseno said investigators were looking for evidence in the case, including the gun used in the shooting, as well as exploring possible motives, whether it was meant to spread terror in Poso or was a personal attack.

He said the suspect would remain in detention for about 120 days while his case file was completed. "If there's no evidence that he is responsible for the shooting, he will be released," Oegroseno said.

Officers named the first brigadier a suspect following a presentation on the case by a joint team from the National Police and the Central Sulawesi Police several days ago.

The presentation was made after the two victims told authorities their attacker was a member of the Poso Police and identified him by name.

The shooting took place Nov. 8 last year, as Ivon and Siti were sitting in front of one of the girl's houses in Kasintuwu district, Poso. A motorcycle approached and shots were fired. Though both girls were injured, they managed to catch a look at the shooter's face.

"Although it was very painful, I managed to look up and saw his face. I was surprised because I knew him," Ivon told journalists after testifying recently at the office of the non-governmental group Poso Center.

Immediately after the shooting, police in Poso arrested three people, Ismet, alias Metu, David and Aksan.

However, all three were released because of a lack of evidence connecting them to the attack. Ismet reportedly had to be hospitalized at a mental institution after his release, which his family said was the result of physical abuse he suffered while in custody.

Last month, the government extended a security operation in Poso, where more than 1,000 people died in religious violence between 2000 and 2001. The operation was extended for three months because of continued tension in the area, but no new troops or police will be brought in.

About 4,000 police officers and soldiers were deployed to restore order in Central Sulawesi in 2005 after a series of shootings and bombings in the region.***

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Poverty programs have 'little impact'

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

The many poverty reduction programs the government implemented in 2005 took only a million people out of absolute poverty, a survey reveals.

Data collected by the Office of the Coordinating Minister for Social Welfare made available to The Jakarta Post on Friday, said 19 ministries and government agencies implemented 55 poverty reduction programs worth a total of Rp 23.1 trillion (US$2.34 billion).

The programs succeeded reducing the number of people classed as extremely poor in the country from 36.1 million in 2004 to 35.1 million in 2005, the data says.

Despite the minor reduction in the overall number of people in poverty, the number of people in urban centers classed as poor increased by 14 million in 2005, the data says.

An official from the Office of the Coordinating Minister for Social Welfare said many of the programs were unable to reach their targets.

"We are now reviewing which programs failed and which succeeded. We will announce the results in June," welfare ministry deputy Sujana Royat, said.

Sujana said 10 programs would be dropped and another 10 would win more support after the review, to be overseen by chief welfare minister Aburizal Bakrie. "This is to show that we are serious in reducing poverty." Infrastructure projects targeting the poor had the least effect, Sujana said.

Of all government agencies tasked with implementing poverty reduction programs in 2005, the education, health and public works ministries and the State Logistics Agency (Bulog) received the most funding -- a total of Rp 18 trillion.

After his election in 2004, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the government planned to halve poverty in the nation by 2009.

State Minister of National Development Planning head Paskah Suzzetta recently told Antara in Makassar that Indonesia aimed at achieving "zero poverty" by 2015 as part of its United Nation's Millennium Development Goals.

The government's critics say the targets are highly unrealistic, and point to increasing unemployment and a rising cost of living as likely reasons the poor will stay poor here.

Neither would the projected economic growth rate, a modest 6 percent per annum, be enough to create sufficient jobs for the two to three million people entering the workforce every year, they said.

Welfare ministry statistics show there are still 28,000 "disadvantaged villages" in over 199 regencies throughout the country.

The lingering economic crisis, underfunding, official mismanagement and corruption and a lack of coordination among state welfare agencies are frequently blamed for a succession of governments' failures to reduce the nation's poverty rate.***

Friday, April 07, 2006

Muslim figures back stay of execution for Poso 3

Ruslan Sangadji, The Jakarta Post, Palu, Jakarta

Representatives of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) and the country's largest Muslim organization Nahdlatul Ulama are calling for a stay of execution for three Poso death-row convicts until the men's claims of innocence can be fully examined.

Their stance contradicts the demand of several Muslim student groups in Central Sulawesi, who are seeking the quick execution of the three Christians convicted of masterminding the killing of 200 Muslims during vicious sectarian violence in 2000.

The Supreme Court this week dismissed a second case review for the men because their avenues of legal recourse had been exhausted, including an appeal for a presidential pardon turned down last year.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has yet to respond to a second plea for clemency filed on the men's behalf.

MUI North Sulawesi chairman Arifin Assegaf, accompanied by Palu parish head Melky Toreh and his Tentena counterpart Jemmy Tumakaka, visited Fabianus Tibo, Dominggus da Silva and Marinus Riwu at Petobo penitentiary here Thursday. The men contend they fought for Christian militants but did not orchestrate killings.

Arifin said the men deserved the chance to bring their evidence -- alleging that 16 others were the masterminds -- before a court of law. Some contend high-ranking military personnel stoked the unrest by supplying arms to both sides.

Arifin urged the government to postpone the execution until more eyewitness accounts were heard and their claims were fully investigated.

"I believe a full investigation into these 16 people will result in fresh findings about people who've put Poso in conflict. My data shows there are other people besides the 16," he said.

He was later joined by MUI Central Sulawesi chairman Saiyid Saggaf Aljufrie, who agreed with Arifin about the imposing of a stay of execution.

"I think what he said is more than enough. I agree with what he said," said Aljufrie.

In Jakarta, NU leader Masdar Farid Mas'udi urged the President to intervene to prevent the executions until there was incontrovertible evidence of the men's guilt.

"Although in legal terms the case has been settled, many clouds still hang over it that must be revealed. The accusation of three people murdering over 200 others is hard to fathom," he said.

Masdar warned that the inflammatory religious and ethnic issues of the conflict could be revived by the men's execution.

"A hasty decision will only exacerbate (problems of) religious relations in Poso. A death penalty is irreversible, so it's best avoided when there are still doubts," he said.

Central Sulawesi Prosecutor's Office head Yahya Sibe said the government would press ahead with the executions.

"It's a fixed decision ... a mandate of the law," he said, adding that he would not make a prior announcement of the time and place of the executions by firing squad.***

Thursday, April 06, 2006

MUI Sulut dan Sulteng Minta Eksekusi Tibo Ditunda

Ruslan Sangadji

Ketua Majelis Ulama Indonesia, Provinsi Sulawesi Utara (Sulut) KH. Ustadz Arifin Assegaf, Kamis (6/4) mengunjungi terpidana mati Poso, Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva di Lembaga Pemasyarakatan Petobo Palu.

Ust Arifin menemui Tibo cs pada pukul 8.00 wita diantar oleh Paroki Palu, Pastor Melky Toreh dan Kepastoran Tentena Pastor Jemmy Tumakaka.

Di hadapan tiga terpidana mati kasus Poso tersebut, Ustadz Arifin meminta kepada Tibo untuk jujur mengungkap apa yang sesungguhnya yang terjadi pada peristiwa Mei 2000.

Setelah bertemu dengan Tibo cs, anggota dewan Pertimbangan Perguruan Islam Alkhairaat ini menyatakan, Tibo memang perlu diberi kesempatan untuk mengungkap keterlibatan kelompok 16 yang disebut Tibo sebagai dalang kerusuhan Poso.

Pada pertemuan itu, Arifin Assegaf juga meminta doa kepada Tuhan. "Saya beri doa: Tuhan Enggkau maha mendengar, dengarlah keluhan kami bahwa kami saat ini sedang didholimi," ujarnya.

Sebagai anggota kelompok peduli Poso, Ust Arifin mengatakan Tibo bisa dianggap sebagai saksi mahkota untuk peristiwa pembunuhan ratusan warga muslim Poso.

Karena itu, ia meminta kepada aparat penegak hukum untuk menunda eksekusi Fabianus Tibo Cs. Permintaan ini kata dia bukan sebagai bentuk intervensi penegakan hukum, tapi yang dimasalahkan adalah pengungkapan kelompok 16 yang disebut Tibo sebagai dalang rusuh Poso yang memilukan Mei 2000.

Ia berkeyakinan pengungkapan kelompok 16 akan terkuak orang-orang yang selama ini terus mengobok-obok Poso. "Bukan hanya 16 orang tapi data saya lebih dari 16 orang itu. Jangan kita menjadi orang dholim," katanya.

Usai ketemu Tibo, Ust Arifin menemui ketua MUI Sulteng, KH Saiyid Saggaf Aljufrie di kantor Pengurus Besar (PB) Alkhairaat Palu. Ustadz Arifin mengatakan, pihak MUI Sulteng meminta agar eksekusi terhadap Tibo ditunda sebelum kelompok 16 diperiksa.

Ustadz Saggaf Aljufrie, yang juga ketua utama Perguruan Islam terbesar di Indonesia Timur ini menyatakan sependapat dengan Ustadz Arifin. "Saya kira sudah cukup apa yang dikatakan Ust Arifin. Kami sependapat," tukasnya sembari pergi meninggalkan ruangan untuk menunaikan sholat Duhur.

Pastoran Tentena, Jemi Tumakaka menyampaikan terimah kasihnya kepada dua ulama besar itu atas keprihatinannnya terhadap kasus Tibo. Ia yakin keadilan akan tiba kepada Tibo meskipun saat ini PK II Tibo cs ditolak.

Kepala Kejaksaan Tinggi Sulteng, Yahya Sibe kembali menegaskan Eksekusi Tibo sudah harga mati. apalagi PK II ditolak maka tak ada alasan bagi Kejati untuk menundanya. "Ini perintah undang-undang," tegasnya.

soal waktu eksekusi Kejati, Yahya Sibe tak bisa memastikan karena ini juga bagian dari undang-undang untuk merahasikan tempat dan waktu ekseskusi. "Soal waktu eksekusi itu rahasia, tak bisa diberitakan," katanya.***

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Pemuda Muslim Desak Percepat Eksekusi Tibo

Ruslan Sangadji

Sedikitnya 100 pemuda muslim yang tergabung dalam Aliansi Masyarakat Peduli Penegakan Hukum, Rabu (5/4) siang, menggelar unjukrasa di halaman Markas Kepolisian Daerah Sulawesi Tengah, mereka menuntut agar eksekusi terhadap terpidana mati kasus kerusuhan Poso, Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva dipercepat.

"Sebagai wujud dari ketaatan kita pada hukum, maka kami minta agar eksekusi terhadap Tibo dan kawan-kawannya dipercepat," kata Muhammad Subhan, Ketua Koordinator Cabang Pergerakan Mahasiswa Islam Indonesia Sulawesi Tengah.

Para pengunjukrasa juga menyesalkan pihak-pihak tertentu yang menolak eksekusi terhadap Fabianus Tibo dan kawan-kawan. Menurut Subhan, kelompok yang menolak eksekusi itu sesungguhnya tidak paham dengan kondisi Poso dan tidak pernah tahu tentang konflik yang terjadi di Poso.

"Harusnya mereka pelajari dulu bagaimana sepak terjang Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva selama berlangsungnya konflik Poso. Dengan begitu mereka tidak seenaknya saja menolak hukuman eksekusi yang akan dilaksanakan nanti," tegas Subhan yang juga pemuda asal Poso itu.

Selain meminta eksekusi dipercepat, pengunjukrasa yang terdiri dari Pergerakan Mahasiswa Islam Indonesia (PMII), Darud Dakwah wal-Irsyad (DDI), Himpunan Pemuda Alkhairaat (HPA), BEM Universitas Alkhairaat dan BEM Sekolah Tinggi Agama Islam Negeri Palu itu meminta polisi agar segera mengusut keterlibatan 16 nama yang disebut-sebut sebagai aktor di balik kerusuhan Poso itu.

Kapolda Sulawesi Tengah, Brigadir Jenderal Polisi Oegroseno yang menerima para pengunjukrasa itu menyatakan, eksekusi terhadap Fabianus Tibo dan kawan-kawannya itu sudah final. "Upaya grasi yang mereka minta ke Presiden sudah ditolak, jadi sekarang tinggal eksekusi saja," kata Kapolda Oegroseno.

Oleh karena itu, Kapolda Sulteng menyatakan bahwa saat ini mereka tinggal menunggu perintah dari pihak Kejaksaan Tinggi setempat, kapan dan di mana eksekusi akan dilaksanakan.

Sementara itu, dari Lembaga Pemasyarakatan Palu, dilaporkan bahwa saat ini penjagaan terhadap ketiga terpidana mati itu sangat diperketat. Selain keluarga dan kuasa hukumnya, pihak-pihak luar termasuk wartawan pun sudah tidak diizinkan lagi untuk menemui Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva.

Tapi, pihak Lembaga Pemasyarakatan Palu mengaku hingga kini belum menerima surat pemberitahuan mengenai rencana eksekusi dari Kejaksaan Tinggi Sulawesi Tengah.

"Kami cuma menerima surat dari Kejaksaan Negeri Palu agar penjagaan dan pengamanan terhadap Tibo dan kawan-kawan agar diperketat. Kami juga diminta untuk tidak memberikan izin pihak lain menemui ketiganya, kecuali keluarga dan kuasa hukumnya." tegas Kepala Lembaga Pemasyarakatan Palu kepada The Jakarta Post (5/4) pagi yang hendak mengantarkan rokok untuk ketiga terpidana mati itu.

Di tempat terpisah, Sekretaris Jenderal DPP Gerakan Pemuda Islam, Aslamuddin Lasawedy mengimbau agar umat Islam bisa membuka hati mereka untuk memaafkan Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva, agar ketiga bisa kembali ke hadirat Tuhannya dalam keadaan tenang.

"Sebentar lagi ketiganya akan dieksekusi, jadi sebaiknya kita maafkan mareka, agar mereka bisa mati dalam damai. Bukankah umat Islam ini adalah umat pemaaf," kata Aslamuddin Lasawedy, Rabu (5/4).

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Police probe allegations by death-row trio

Ruslan Sangadji and Yemris Fointuna, The Jakarta Post, Palu/Kupang

Two of three men on death row in Poso, Central Sulawesi, told police Monday they were advised by their legal counsel not to reveal the names of 16 men who masterminded a wave of sectarian violence.

Fabianus Tibo, who was branded the commander of the "red group" of Christian militants, said he only decided to tell investigators the names after the three were sentenced to death for "masterminding" the conflict.

"I was asked by my former lawyer, Robert Bofe, not to mention the 16 names. I followed his advice even though I didn't know the reason why," the 60-year-old said.

"But after the judges decided to sentence me to death, I had no other choice but to reveal the 16 names as the real masterminds."

Apart from Tibo, police investigators, led by Central Sulawesi Police detective chief Sr. Comr. I Wayan Suharsa, also questioned Marinus da Silva about the allegations.

Tibo, da Silva and Marinus Riwu were sentenced to death in March 2001 by the Palu District Court for their role in the killing of about 200 Muslims in 2000.

Immediately after the panel of judges delivered the verdict, Tibo presented a handwritten list of 16 names of alleged masterminds. He identified them as Janes Simangunsong, Paulus Tungkanan, Angky Tungkanan, Lempa Delly, Erik Rombot, Yahya Pattiro, Sigilipu, Ladue, Obed, Sarjun, Herry Banibi, Guntur Taridji, Ventje Angkaw, Theo Mandayo, Son Ruagadi, and Bate Lateka.

However, neither the provincial court nor higher courts had taken Tibo's declaration into their legal consideration in upholding the verdict.

The police's move to question Tibo and da Silva comes amid hectic preparations by the Central Sulawesi prosecutor's office for the execution.

If the police decide to proceed with the statements of the two men, there may be a stay of execution to allow them to testify in any criminal proceedings against the 16, despite a statement Sunday from the Attorney General's Office there would be no more delays.

Last week, lawyers for the three filed a second plea for clemency with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, after their first appeal for a pardon was turned down last December.

High-ranking officials in the province -- including head of Central Sulawesi prosecutor's office Yahya Sibe and police chief Brig. Gen. Oegroseno, Palu Mayor Rudy Mastura -- held a closed-door meeting Monday on the planned execution.

It was the second in as many days after several top officials, including Oegroseno, met Sunday night. Present at Sunday's meeting was local Christian leader Rev. Renaldy Damanik and human rights activists.

Local religious leaders say they fear the executions will incite fresh violence in the area, which is home to equal numbers of Christians and Muslims.

"The government has never put on trial the perpetrators in some other conflict-prone areas nationwide, such as Aceh, Papua, Ambon, Sampit (in Kalimantan). Why is it only here, in Poso, that the common people must die for something they never did?" Damanik said.

Monday, April 03, 2006

No reprieve for Poso 3, officials say

Ruslan Sangadji
The Jakarta Post
Palu, Central Sulawesi

Prosecutors insisted Sunday the death sentence for three men convicted for their role in the sectarian conflict in Poso, Central Sulawesi, would be carried out soon despite mounting calls for a stay of execution.

Central Sulawesi Prosecutor's Office head M. Jahja Sibe said technical difficulties were holding up the execution of Fabianus Tibo, 60, Marinus Riwu, 54, and Dominggus da Silva, 43, three Christians who were convicted of masterminding a series of attacks on Muslims in Poso in 2000.

"I need to reaffirm that the executions have not been carried out because the preparations are incomplete," Sibe was quoted by Antara newswire as saying.

Last week, lawyers for the three filed a second plea for clemency with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, while demanding the prosecution of 16 men they said were the real masterminds of the Poso unrest.

"We will press ahead with the execution process of the three convicted men despite their second appeal for a presidential pardon," Sibe said, adding a convict could only make one appeal for presidential clemency.

Attorney General's Office spokesman Masyhudi Ridwan also said Saturday that "technical reasons" forced prosecutors to delay the execution although he did not explain the difficulties.

The office previously said the men, currently detained in a Palu penitentiary, would face the firing squad by the end of March after their appeal for a presidential pardon was turned down last December.

Local Christians and some Muslims have backed the demand to delay the executions until the three men have been given the opportunity to testify in any future trial of the people identified by the lawyers.

Thousands of Christians held a mass prayer gathering Saturday in the Central Sulawesi town of Tentena to show their opposition to the executions.

There were tearful prayers asking for the salvation of the men.

Local Christian leader Rev. Renaldy Damanik, who led the prayer, expressed concern the executions could trigger a new wave of sectarian hostilities in Poso.

"I can't imagine about what will happen after the execution, as hundreds of emotional Christian people would carry the three men's coffins along the 200-kilometer-road connecting Tagolu village to Poso and Beteleme in Morowali regency (all mainly Christian areas," said Damanik, who was released from police custody in 2004 for alleged involvement in the turmoil.

Damanik also said the execution would "bury the truth" of who orchestrated the two-year conflict in Poso.

Other local Christian leaders have said Tibo, Da Silva and Riwo were scapegoats in a scenario contrived by the political elite.

In an effort to maintain calm before the executions, local police and religious leaders held a meeting Sunday evening, an activist said.

However, Central Sulawesi Police chief Brig. Gen. Oegroseno claimed the situation in Poso was "under control".

Damanik also urged Yudhoyono to visit Poso to hear the local community's opposition to the executions.

The three men were sentenced to death in March 2001 by the Palu District Court for masterminding a series of attacks that killed a total of 200 Muslims in 2000.***

Kaitan 16 Nama, Tibo Diperiksa Dirreskrim

Ruslan Sangadji

Dua orang terpidana mati kasus kerusuhan Poso, Sulawesi Tengah, Fabianus Tibo dan Dominggus da Silva, Senin (3/4) sekitar pukul 14.00 Wita, diperiksa oleh tim Direktorat Reserse dan Kriminal Polda Sulteng.

Pemeriksaan itu berkaitan dengan penyebutan 16 nama oleh Fabianus Tibo dan kawan-kawan, sebagai aktor intelektual di balik kerusuhan Poso tahun 2000 silam.

Dalam pemeriksaan yang dipimpin Direktur Reserse dan Kriminal Polda Sulteng, Komisaris Besar Polisi I Wayan Suharsa itu, Tibo ditanyai bahwa kenapa saat berlangsungnya persidangan tahun 2001 lalu, ia tidak langsung menyebut 16 nama tersebut.

Dalam jawabannya, Fabianus Tibo mengatakan bahwa sebenarnya ia akan menyebut 16 nama tersebut, hanya saja ia dilarang oleh kuasa hukumnya terdahulu, Robert Bofe.

"Waktu itu Pak Robert Bofe melarang saya untuk menyebut 16 nama tersebut. Makanya saya tidak berani juga bilang di persidangan. Saya ini kan tidak tahu apa-apa, jadi saya ikuti saja," kata Fabianus Tibo.

Fabianus Tibo menyebut 16 nama sebagai aktor intelektual kerusuhan Poso, nanti pada saat persidangan pembacaan vonis hukuman mati di Pengadilan Negeri Palu. Saat itu, Fabianus Tibo hanya menuliskan 16 nama di secarik kertak dan diserahkan kepada majelis hakim yang menyidangkannya.

16 nama yang dimaksud Fabianus Tibo sebagai aktor intelektual kerusuhan Poso itu adalah Janes Simangunsong, Paulus Tungkanan, Angky Tungkanan, Lempa Delly, Erik Rombot, Yahya Pattiro, Sigilipu, Ladue, Obed, Sarjun, herry Banibi, Guntur Taridji, Ventje Angkaw, Theo Mandayo, Son Ruagadi dan Bate Lateka.

Di tempat terpisah, Kepala Kejaksaan Tinggi, Yahya Sibe, Kapolda Brigadir Jenderal Polisi Oegroseno, Walikota Palu, Rudy Mastura dan beberapa pejabat lainnya menggelar rapat tertutup pada Senin (3/4) di kantor Walikota Palu.

Rapat tersebut sebagai lanjutan dari pertemuan pada Minggu (2/4) malam. Tidak diketahui apa yang dibicarakan dalam rapat tertutup itu. Tak satu pun pejabat yang dikonfirmasi, mau memberitahukan agenda dan hasil rapat tersebut.

"Kita cuma membicarakan soal keamanan dan ketertiban di Kota Palu saja. Tidak ada pembicaraan apa-apa selain itu," kata Walikota Palu, Rusdy Mastura kepada The Jakarta Post via telepon, Senin (3/4) sore.

Rusdy Mastura yang dikenal terbuka dengan para wartawan itu, tidak mau menjelaskan lebih detail soal hasil pertemuan dengan petinggi Kejaksaan Tinggi dan Kepolisian Sulawesi Tengah itu. Pihak kepolisian pun tidak bersedia dimintai keterangan soal agenda rapat tersebut.

Namun demikian, diduga rapat tersebut membicarakan soal keamanan berkaitan dengan rencana pelaksanaan eksekusi terhadap Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva. Karena, dari informasi yang berhasil dihimpun The Jakarta Post, bahwa jika eksekusi jadi dilaksanakan pada bulan April ini, maka akan dilakukan di Kota Palu. Hanya saja, tidak diketahui soal tempat dan waktunya.***

Sunday, April 02, 2006

GKST Minta Presiden ke Poso

Ruslan Sangadji

Gereja Kristen Sulawesi Tengah (GKST) mendesak Presiden Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, agar segera ke Poso untuk mendengarkan aspirasi masyarakat Kristen, kaitan dengan rencana eksekusi mati tiga terpidana kasus kerusuhan Poso, Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva.

"Kami minta Presiden secepatya ke Poso untuk mendengar langsung apa keinginan warga Kristen Poso," tegas Ketua GKST, Pendeta Renaldy Damanik di Palu, Minggu (2/4) sore.

Menurut Damanik, warga Kristen di Poso menyatakan menolak rencana eksekusi mati terhadap ketiga umat Katolik itu. Salah satu bentuk penolakan itu, adalah semakin aktifinya mereka mendoakan ketiga terpidana mati kerusuhan Poso tersebut. "Doa dilakukan tidak hanya pada jam-jam ibadah saja, tapi setiap saat," kata Damanik.

Bahkan, menurut Damanik, puncaknya dilakukan doa bersama di Tentena, Kecamatan Pamona Utara, yang dihadiri ribuan umat Kristiani di Poso. Saat itu seluruh jemaat meneteskan air mata, mereka mendoakan keselamatan Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da Silva serta memohon agar eksekusi dibatalkan.

Damanik menyatakan, dirinya tidak bisa membayangkan apa yang akan terjadi bila itu setelah dieksekusi, lantas mayat ketiga terpidana itu melintas di perkampungan Kristen Poso sepanjang lebih 200 kilometer, dari Desa Tagolu, Poso menuju Beteleme, di Kabupaten Morowali.

Damanik menambahkan, jika Tibo, Riwu dan da Silva dieksekusi, maka seluruh kasus Poso sejak Desember 1998 hingga Desember 2001 diungkap lagi, namun tetap mengacu pada kerangka Deklarasi Malino akhir Desember 2001.

Menurut Damanik, apa yang terjadi pada Desember 1998 sampai tahun 2000 adalah konflik atau benturan fisik antara dua komunitas, kerena ketidakmampuan pemerintah dan aparat keamanan baik d pusat maupun Provinsi Sulteng dan Kabupaten Poso, sehingga terus berkelanjutan dan memakan korban manusia.

Sebelumnya, Kapolda Sulawesi Tengah, Brigadir Jenderal Polisi Oegroseno mengatakan, dalam amatannya di lapangan reaksi masyarakat terhadap rencana eksekusi tiga orang terpidana mati itu, biasa-biasa saja. "Reaksi masyarakat tidak menonjol. Biasa-biasa saja kok," tegas Kapolda Sulteng.

Ketua Front Solidaritas Islam Revolusioner (FSIR) Sulawesi Tengah, Sofyan Farid Lembah, menegaskan eksekusi terhadap Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu dan Dominggus da SIlva itu, tidak bisa ditunda lagi, karena prosedur hukumnya sudah memiliki kekuatan tetap.

Menurut Sofyan Lembah, eksekusi itu juga sebagai pengobat kesedihan bagi sedikitnya 2000 keluarga muslim yang dibunuh di Poso. Dia kuatir, jika eksekusi itu tidak dilakukan maka akan terjadi lagi konflik baru di Poso. "Jadi siapa yang bertanggungjawab dengan terbunuhnya ribuan umat Islam itu," kata Sofyan Farid Lembah.***

Execution of Poso convicts postponed

Ruslan Sangadji, The Jakarta Post, Palu/Jakarta

The execution of three Christians convicted of masterminding the 2001 sectarian conflict in Poso, Central Sulawesi, has been postponed for "technical reasons", the Attorney General's Office said Saturday.

The Attorney General's Office had earlier announced that the three would be executed at the end of March after their plea for presidential clemency was rejected.

"There is something which is yet to be prepared for the execution. It is a technical problem," the Office's spokesman Mashyudi Ridwan told The Jakarta Post, declining to discuss the exact reasons for the delay.

He said that the postponement had nothing to do with demands the execution be canceled until 16 men, who the convicted three claim are the real masterminds of the conflict, testify in court.

The trials of the 16 men, two of whom are influential local figures, are expected to shed light on the origins of the deadly conflict.

In the Central Sulawesi capital of Palu, where the three are spending their last days, Catholic priests have refused to accompany them to their executions until the 16 accused go on trial.

Neither Mashyudi nor the convicts' lawyers would say if the priests' resistance was the "technical problem" that was delaying the execution.

"Our request for a second case review and presidential pardon is being processed, therefore the execution must be delayed until the truth comes to light," Father Jimmy Tumbelaka said.

The priest of the Tentena and Morowali parish said that the three men, Fabianus Tibo, Marinus Riwu, and Dominggus da Silva, were only victims, the scapegoats of a scenario created by Poso's political elite.

It's commonly believed that the simmering conflict was the result of a power struggle between Muslim and Christian political elites in Poso, a Christian enclave in Central Sulawesi.

Harris Hutabarat, a lawyer for the three men, proposed the second clemency last Tuesday after the first request was denied by the President in November 2005.

In early March this year the three men also requested a review of the case.

"According to the 2002 law on clemency, an execution must be postponed whenever a plea for clemency is still in the process," said Roy Rening, the leader of the three's defense team.

"We hope that the Supreme Court, as the last bastion of law, provides the president with fair and balanced opinions before he decides on the fate of these three," added Roy.

Poso is a regency equally divided between Christians and Muslims. In 2000 and 2001, the province became the scene of battles between two sectarian groups, leaving about 1,000 people dead.

On July 25, 2001, the police arrested Tibo, Da Silva and Riwu, all Christians. The Poso District Court found them guilty of leading an attack on a Muslim village and sentenced them to death in the same year. (09/10)