Posted by: mel | August 31, 2009

Why have just one when you can have two, or three?

Jakarta Post | Indah Setiawati , Jakarta  | City | 31 August 2009

Maintaining two relationships at a time takes a lot of energy, but keeping two or more identity cards is another story. Many Jakarta residents have several identity cards (KTP) for various reasons, but most often for convenience, including to buy vehicles in one municipality without holding official residency there.

Others move to the capital without terminating their KTP in towns of origin, creating inaccuracies in national population data.

For Indra, 26, as he wished to be called, his life has been an administrative fiasco from day one.

“My mother didn’t have Indonesian citizenship when me and my siblings were born. That was why we were registered as my aunt’s children – because it would have been very expensive to get birth certificates for non-citizens,” Indra told The Jakarta Post recently.

The Chinese Indonesian said his father later managed to get KTP for the whole family because he had made friends at a neighborhood unit in Tanah Abang, Central Jakarta, where his grandfather used to live.

Although the address on the KTP was his grandfather’s house, the building had been abandoned long ago, he said.

Indra, who used a KTP with a Tanah Abang address to apply for a credit card and bank account, made a second KTP when he was going to make a passport.

“The passport data has to be the same as what is on the KTP, so I made another KTP in Cisuak, Tangerang, where my foster parents lived,” Indra said.

When his foster parents moved to an area in Bumi Serpong Damai in South Tangerang, they voluntarily made his third KTP in case he would ever need it, he said.

However, none of the three cards bore the address of his house in Radio Dalam, South Jakarta, which belongs to his relative, he said.

Indra said he welcomed the government’s plan to introduce the Single Identity Number (SIN) system, which sees each citizen assigned with a unique number to be used for all personal documents including identity cards, passports, driving licenses, insurance policies, land certificates, property ownership and tax cards.

“I only hope there is no discrimination against Chinese Indonesians under the new system,” Indra said, adding that he would use his residential address in Radio Dalam and abandon the two other cards should the system ever get up and running.

Edy, 28, a resident of Bogor regency, said he had two KTP for a different purposes.

Edy used to live in Bogor municipality, where he made the first KTP.

After moving to Cisarua in Bogor regency, his neighborhood unit chief made him another KTP because he was assigned as a member of a Polling Station Working Committee (KPPS) in the recent general election.

“I kept the Bogor city KTP because it’s better for processing documents,” he said.

Such administrative breaches often occur in other regions across Indonesia, despite Law No.23/2006 which stipulates that citizens found in possession of more than one KTP face maximum penalties of two years in prison and fines of up to Rp 25 million (US$2,283).

The law also stipulates that officers who purposely prolong the process of making the civil documents face fines of up to Rp 10 million.

Citizens with multiple KTPs have long been an issue for the agency. Despite the agency having an online database, residents can still get additional KTP with different numbers by registering themselves under different names, an official said.

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