Southeast Sulawesi administration
accused of misusing refugee

The Southeast Sulawesi provincial administration has been accused of misusing Rp 539 billion (US$56 million) in donations earmarked for Maluku refugees.

Arifin La Huda, a representative of the refugees displaced during the three-year sectarian conflict in Maluku, said on Wednesday that they have not received a single rupiah from the administration since 2003.

The administration, however, sent a letter to the Social Affairs Ministry in early 2012 that said it had disbursed Rp 539 billion to 53,839 refugees in Southeast Sulawesi between 2003 and 2009, Antara news agency reported.

The refugees learned about the donations from the letter, Arifin said. “The letter stated that the funds for the refugees from Maluku were disbursed in three stages, with each refugee receiving Rp 3.5 million in total.”

Southeast Sulawesi Governor Nur Alam had declined to meet with the refugees to anser their allegations, according to Arifin, who said he would report the officials to the KPK if they failed to account for the money. (han/iwa)

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