Indonesian National Police Chief Revokes Telegram on Police Coverage
Indonesian National Police Chief Genera Listyo Sigit Prabowo has revoked a telegram on how the media should cover crime, hours after the message provoked an outcry from the press.
“I would like to apologize to the media over the misunderstanding surrounding the telegram,” said Sigit of the guideline, which determines how violent crimes and actions are portrayed by the media.
“We need constructive criticism from the media and our external partners to carry out oversight of the police.” He maintained that the telegram is more for internal use “to discourage the police personnel from carrying out police brutality or acting in an arbitrary, highhanded manner.”
Sigit added that the telegram is designed to make the police carry out their work “with a firm hand that is in line with standard operating procedures, yet enforce the law with a humane manner,” he maintained.
“But media coverage often showed the police acting in a highhanded manner, which might undo the police’s effort to improve its image and services. So I urge the police to be exercise more restraint, as their actions are closely scrutinized by the public in general and the media in particular.”
President Joko Widodo appointed Listyo Sigit Prabowo as head of the Indonesian National Police last January, replacing his predecessor Idham Azis.
He has made hearts and minds on top of the police’s agenda, namely through measures such as restorative justice, or bringing the offender and victim together to raise the offenders’ awareness of the consequences of their crime, and how it affected their victims.