JAKARTA - Indonesia's parliament will debate on Wednesday two conflicting recommendations from an inquiry into a bank bailout and may hold a rare vote to determine the future of two key pro-market reformers.
Shouting and jostling broke out in parliament on Tuesday after it became clear the inquiry had failed to reach agreement on whether Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati and Vice President Boediono should face criminal investigation over the contested rescue of Bank Century.
Analysts say anti-reform elements from both within and outside President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's ruling coalition have tried to use the inquiry to oust the two technocrats but that it appeared the pair were safe.
The inquiry on Tuesday handed down two contradictory recommendations to parliament. The first found that Boediono and Indrawati had not acted improperly and that the bailout was justified. The second recommended the pair be investigated for criminal wrongdoing.
The parliament, which often rules by consensus, will decide on Wednesday if a vote will be held to determine which recommendation it will formally support. It is not clear when such a vote could take place, although a debate will take place first to determine the process.
Kevin O'Rourke, a Jakarta-based political risk analyst, told Reuters that under the rules, parliament could not compel the president to launch an investigation into his two top technocrats, even if the vote went against them.
The split has underlined tensions between Yudhoyono's pro-market, pro-reform Democrat Party and his two main coalition partners -- the Golkar Party and Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), which both have said they support a criminal investigation into Indrawati and Boediono.
So far, Indonesian stocks, bonds and the rupiah currency have shown little reaction to the political infighting. But prolonged conflict over reforms could put that at risk and some of the hefty gains of the past year could be lost if eith either Indrawati or Boediono stepped down.
The outcome of the parliament vote remains unclear. The Democratic Party controls about a quarter of the seats in the 560-seat parliament and together with coalition partners about 75 percent but the defection of key coalition members on this issue means the two sides appear quite evenly split.
There was further lobbying overnight and the Jakarta Post quoted Democratic Party member Yahya Secawira as saying the party had focused on trying to win over support from the small opposition Great Indonesia Party (Gerindra) to vote with them.
Based on a survey of three analysts, the Investor Daily newspaper said that 50.89 percent of parliamentarians -- including Gerindra -- were expected to vote in favour of the recommendation that found the bailout was justified.
But it said if there was a secret vote it was possible a majority would support the recommendation that the vice president and finance minister be investigated for criminal wrongdoing.
Security appeared tight outside parliament early on Wednesday. A day earlier, as politicians shouted and argued inside, police outside fired tear gas and water cannons to try to disperse fractious crowds of opposing protesters.
(Editing by Ed Davies and Sanjeev Miglani)