Indonesia seizes Metallica guitar over corruption

Featured Politics South East Asia - May 30th, 2013

An Indonesian official has been forced to surrender a collector’s item guitar given to him by a concert promoter amid concerns about corruption in the graft-ridden nation.

Joko Widodo, the heavy-metal loving governor of Indonesian capital of Jakarta, drew the attention of the country’s anti-corruption commission after appearing on national television strumming a maroon bass guitar autographed by Metallica’s Robert Trujillo.

Widodo voluntarily surrendered the guitar, which bore the words “Giving Back!… Keep Playin’ That Cool Funky Bass!”, for investigation until the commission decides whether to return or confiscate the item.

But following the probe, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) said the guitar will be confiscated by the government “as there is a conflict of interest which could potentially lead to bribery”.

“It will be state property,” commission official Giri Supradiyono told AFP. “The promoter probably knew Widodo was a Metallica fan. There’s a possibility he might expect something in return”.