Legislators Smell Corruption in Cattle Cooperatives

NEGARA

A row has broken out in Jembrana over the number of cows at a hitherto unannounced agricultural cooperative, which regency legislators say demand explanation in case there is corruption involved.

The cooperative, Nandini Krishna, received a visit last Monday from a team of legislators seeking answers. They went away unsatisfied.
   
A number of members of Commission B, which is headed Nyoman Kusumayasa, said they were surprised at the existence of this and other cooperatives. Inspection of the records at Nandini raised further questions about accountability and the legality of the operation, Kusumayasa said.
    
It appeared that many budget lines had been drained of funds, allegedly to pay for cattle programmes. The commission also found uncertainty existed over management and employee status.
    
The 169 cows found at the cooperative’s main byre looked skinny and stunted and not like five-year-animals should look.
    
Kusumayasa said for the procurement of these cows to drain billions of rupiah in public funds. The money was originally taken from the 2006 budget year with a value of Rp660 million (US$73,300) or more, with a later addition of Rp1.8 million ($200).
    
“That was taken from the irrigation budget,” he said.
    
Kusumayasa said the figures did not add up because on the books the return of funds for capital expenditure was double the per-head value of the stock – Rp641 million ($71,200) and Rp2.347 million ($260,000).
    
At another cooperative, managed by Koperasi Mandiri Jimbarwana, 200 cows were bought for Rp755 million ($84,000) but valued on the books at Rp3.7 million ($411) a head.
    
In 2008, the budget provision for animal feed and forage was Rp2.184 billion ($242,000).
    
The unannounced visit to Nandini found only a few employees present.
    
Another Commission B member, Nyoman Sandiyasa, said it was unclear whether the cooperative was a legal entity or just a name.

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