Indonesia names new chiefs for counter-terrorism, food monitoring

Indonesia on July 20 appointed new heads of the country's anti-terrorism agency and the food and drugs monitoring body.

Commissioner General Suhardi Alius in sworn-in ceremony (Source: VNA)
President Joko Widodo led the inauguration ceremony for Commissioner General Suhardi Alius and Penny Kusumastuti Lukito who have been appointed to the top positions at the National Counter-terrorism Agency (BNPT) and the Food and Drugs Monitoring Agency (BPOM), respectively.

Suhardi, who succeeded General Tito Karnavian after he took the role as National Police Chief, still faces the rising threat of terrorism in the country which is the world's most populous Muslim-majority country. Especially after an anti-terrorism operation on July 18 successfully killed the nation's most-wanted terrorist Santoso in a gunfight, experts warned that his followers may want to avenge his death.

Meanwhile, Penny's appointment came after Indonesia saw a nationwide fake vaccine scandal which involved 14 health facilities and had been occurring for more than a decade.

Last week, the government announced that it would have an organisational restructure within the BPOM to prevent the incident from ever happening in the country again.-


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