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Legislators Joining Demand for Complete Disclosure on Police’s Failure to Install US$5.8 million in X-ray Detectors at Bali Seaports


Bali News: Deeper Insights Needed
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(7/8/2013)

It remains unclear when and where X-ray machines that cost the province of Bali more than Rp. 58 billion (US$5.8 million) and have sat idle for more than six months will be installed by police at the ports of Padang Bai and Gilimanuk.

The Bali Post quotes a community leader in Bali, Nyoman Sentana, who said on Thursday, July 4, 2013, that the state of continuing uncertainty over the X-ray machines was proof of a lack of serious commitment by the provincial government to keeping Bali safe.

He continued, the international standard of security for Bali sought by the Governor remains little more than lip service, pointing to the high rate of crime and the failure to install security equipment, such as the X-ray machines.

Sentana, who is chairman of the United People of Badung (Forum Masyarakat Badung Bersatu), said the governor’s policy should be pursued and supported by the legislature.

“When will the X-rays be operating? What’s the impediment? This must be answered by the Governor, the Legislature and the Police. Let’s not let the international standard of security envisioned by the Governor only become an empty slogan or become politicized,” demanded Sentana.

Separately, the chairman of Commission IV of the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali), Nyoman Parta, questioned the reluctance of legislators to take a firm stand on the long-delayed introduction of the X-ray devices. He called on lawmakers to immediately summon the police and provincial officials who managed the bidding process for the X-rays to uncover the true facts of the case.

“The legislature is reluctant to take a stance in the problem of the X-ray. I hope that this matter can be quickly resolved,” said Parta. Parta’s comments were made on Wednesday, July 3, 2013, at a session of the DPRD-Bali to review a special report on the implementation of the 2012 provincial budget.

Spotlighting the continuing delay in deploying the X-ray machines, Parta stressed the important role to be played by the devices in safeguarding Bali. He said it was time to determine if the machines somehow failed to meet the original tender documents, if there was a lack of funds to install the X-rays or the problem was a lack of trained personnel to operate the equipment.

Meanwhile, the secretary of Commission I of the DPRD-Bali, Dewa Nyoman Rai, said the security of Bali must remain a top priority, especially on the eve of the APEC Summit to be held in Bali in October. Said Rai: “The provision of the X-ray was budgeted for Rp. 58 billion and the equipment is already here but not yet installed. We want to know why they have not been installed. We want this matter implemented as Rp. 58 billion is a large sum of money.”

Dewa Rai is also questioning the sophistication of the new x-ray equipment, which, according to tests by the police, takes 10-15 minutes to inspect a single vehicle. Many in the legislator see the inspection process as taking too much time. One legislator, Gusti Made Suryanta Putra, is openly alleging the new X-ray machines are not the latest models and are already out-of-date.

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