Indonesian President, Joko Widodo, dismissed Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Arcandra Tahar on Monday after the minister landed in a soup for a dual citizen controversy.
"Responding to the public statement regarding the citizenship status of Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Arcandra Tahar, and after collecting information from several sources, the President has decided to dismiss with honor Arcandra Tahar from his position as energy and mineral resources minister. [The President] has appointed Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan as acting energy and mineral resources minister until a definitive minister is appointed," said State Secretary Pratikno, as reported by The Jakarta Post.
Arcandra Taha, who was elected as the new minister on July 27, held dual citizenships- one of the US and one of Indonesia. According to Indonesian Citizenship Law of 2006, Indonesian citizenship gets null and void if the holder accepts any other foreign citizenship.
Prior to this removal, rumours have been going rounds for the past few weeks that both Pratikno and Arcandra were evading the issue by not confirming if Arcandra indeed had a US passport.
Moreover, President Jokowi's leadership skills are being criticised now as experts are questioning Arcandra appointment by the President without proper investigation.
Arcandra was appointed to the key ministerial post during the cabinet reshuffling by the President few weeks back.
However, the State Palace refuted all allegations that the decision to remove Arcandra Tahar from his post was a result of negligence in the selection process.
According to the news agency, Presidential spokesman Johan Budi said on Monday: "Don't look at it that way [administrative negligence]. But see it as the President being responsive to issues that arise [....] the President also obtained information and data from various parties, and the result was the President decided to dismiss him with honor."