Sat, 13 April 2024
The Daily Ittefaq

Indonesia 2024 election: What brought voters to the polls

Update : 14 Feb 2024, 13:52

Indonesians voted for a new president, vice president and members of parliament and local legislative bodies on Wednesday with no major incidents reported across the archipelago.

Early and unofficial results were expected by the end of Wednesday by quick-count outlets certified by the General Elections Commission. 

The election was a massive undertaking, with over 204 million of the country's 270 million people registering to vote across some 17,000 islands. The voters are spread across three time zones, from Papua in the east to the tip of Sumatra over 5,000 kilometers (3,000 miles) away in the west.

Young people made up the majority of registered voters, with some 55% of them aged between 17 and 40, according to the commission.

Incumbent President Joko Widodo, better known as Jokowi, is finishing his second term in office and cannot run again because of term limits.

This year's vote will thus lead to the first change in leadership in a decade.

Who are the presidential candidates?

Three candidates ran to succeed Jokowi as president: Ganjar Pranowo and Anies Baswedan, both former governors in their 50s, and Prabowo Subianto, the current defense minister.

Subianto is a 72-year-old former army special forces commander who is running for the top job for a third time. He lost to Jokowi in 2014 and 2019.

To cement his chances this time round, Subianto roped in the hugely popular president's son, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, as his running mate for vice president. 

The candidacy of 36-year-old Raka, who is half Subianto's age and currently serving as mayor in Surakarta city, is seen by many analysts as an attempt to secure more votes from the younger generation.

Subianto also hails from an elite political family. He was once the son-in-law of Suharto, a military dictator who was ousted from power in 1998 after over three decades of rule.

Subianto is accused of rights abuses while serving as a military chief during the dying days of the Suharto dictatorship. The allegations are unproven, and Prabowo has always denied any responsibility.

Ganjar Pranowo, another candidate, is a former governor of Central Java Province. 

His presidential bid is backed by the country's ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P).

Pranowo has announced incumbent Cabinet minister Mahfud Md as his running mate.

Pranowo adopted the political style of President Widodo by trying to gain sympathy from grassroots movements.


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