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Autographed Metallica Bass Leads to Jakarta Government Investigation

Metallica Robert Trujillo
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Jakarta’s governor, Joko Widodo, is parting with his prized signed Metallica bass for the time being as the government investigates whether or not the gift from the band violates any conflict of interest rules.

The Jakarta Globe reports that the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has asked that Widodo surrender the guitar after he was photographed with it as all public officials are required to report the receipt of gifts to the antigraft commission within 30 days.

The bass was signed by Robert Trujillo to Widodo in April with the message, “To Jokowski, Keep playing that cool, funky bass!” Widodo, an avid metal fan, told reporters last week that he planned to ask Metallica to play the country and was thrilled to have received the gift from the bassist.

“After 30 days, we will announce if the gift can be returned to the recipient or should be confiscated by the state,” explained KPK spokesperson Johan Budi. “If they say I can’t have it, so be it,” stated Widodo. “I will return the guitar to the state.” The governor said he considered the bass a souvenir rather than a gift, but decided to report it to the KPK just to make sure that he was in accordance with policy.

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