PDI-P hands it to Ahok

BINTANGNEWS.com – In a call that many had long predicted, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) has decided to nominate Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama for next year’s gubernatorial election still, but not without reservations.

After months of speculation and political maneuvering by both sides, the largest pro government party finally endorsed Ahok, who had already secured the support of other major pro government parties, namely the Golkar Party, the Hanura Party and the NasDem Party.
In return for the party’s support, Ahok accepted Jakarta Deputy Governor Djarot Saiful Hidayat, a member of the PDI-P, as his
running mate.

Dressed in batik rather than the red outfit of the PDI-P, Ahok attended the official announcement of his nomination at the party’s headquarters on Jl. Diponegoro in Central Jakarta on Tuesday night.

His sartorial choice may have symbolized his wish to appear independent in spite of the party’s support, which he nonetheless needs in order to win the election.

The announcement was preceded by a meeting between Ahok and party officials, including chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri, during which they signed a political contract.

Ahok said after the meeting that he would not become a PDI-P member and the PDI-P had accepted his decision. “What matters is his commitment to the political contract,” party secretary-general Hasto Kristiyanto said.

The event, broadcast live on TV, crushed the hopes of the anti-Ahok alliance, known as the Kinship Coalition, which had pleaded with the PDI-P to nominate Surabaya Mayor Tri Rismaharini, who hinted her willingness to enter the race at the 11th hour.

It also cemented his position as the candidate to beat in the election. With the largest party in the capital now backing his electoral bid, Ahok, who has consistently topped voter polls, is expected to win the 2017 election with relative ease.

Nevertheless, the political marriage between Ahok and the PDI-P may not be entirely sweetness and light. The fact that the PDI-P waited until four days before the deadline for candidate registration at the General Elections Commission (KPU) to pick Ahok reflected a split within the party and Megawati’s indecision over who the party would support in Jakarta.

Supporters of the party at the grass roots, resentful about Ahok’s eviction policies, have long voiced their opposition to Ahok’s nomination. A number of party leaders in Jakarta have also lambasted Ahok for his refusal to follow party rules regarding the nomination process.

A video that went viral last month showed PDI-P members in Jakarta denouncing Ahok in a song with the line: “Ahok must be defeated”.

Megawati also sent mixed signals to Ahok and then to Risma before coming to Tuesday’s decision.

Ahok is known to be closer to President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, his former running mate in the 2012 Jakarta election, than to Megawati, whose relations with the latter have been strained over a number of issues, including the controversial and aborted effort to appoint Budi Gunawan as National Police chief in 2015. Budi was recently installed as the nation’s spy chief after serving as deputy National Police chief.

“Whether or not Ahok will be elected Jakarta governor matters so much to Jokowi,” Pelita Harapan University political analyst Emrus Sihombing told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.

The President, Emrus said, needed somebody in the capital with whom he could easily collaborate in executing various projects in the country’s most strategic city. “Jokowi needs somebody who is psychologically close to him,” he said.

In July, Jokowi, Ahok and Megawati shared a car on the way to a Golkar event. At the time, Megawati was still reluctant to endorse Ahok, telling him that her party had “mechanisms” for selecting governor candidates.

Emrus, however, suggested party resistance to Ahok’s nomination would fade by election day as the party’s rank and file were known to be loyal. “Never in the past have party members opposed their party’s decision,” he said.

Ahok, a Christian of Chinese descent, is the first double-minority candidate to top political surveys in Muslim-majority Jakarta. A highly divisive figure as a result of his combative demeanor, Ahok has ruffled the feathers of the political establishment as well as hard-line Muslims, who have called Ahok an “infidel” and, therefore, unsuited to be elected governor.

Jakarta-based Pollster Indonesia revealed last week that the pair of Ahok-Djarot was chosen by the majority of its 400 respondents over other potential candidates. When provided with a head-to-head scenario of Ahok-Djarot versus former law and human rights minister Yusril Ihza Mahendra and businessman Sandiaga Uno, Ahok-Djarot was preferred by 44.62 percent of the respondents and Yusril-Sandiaga was chosen by 35.38 percent.***

follow continues resources world on twitter bintangnews.com

Editing: T. Bintang

source: Thejakartapost

Related News

Tidak ada komentar:

Leave a Reply