Indonesia presidential election shapes up with Anies Baswedan & Ganjar Pranowo registering as candidates

Anies arrived on a land rover, while Ganjar came in a floating mini hut.

Brenda Khoo | October 20, 2023, 09:21 PM



Anies Baswedan and Ganjar Pranowo have registered themselves as presidential candidates for Indonesia's upcoming 2024 presidential elections.

The two presidential hopefuls and their vice-presidential (VP) candidates registered at the General Elections Commission (KPU) headquarters on Oct. 19 in Indonesia's capital Jakarta, Benar News reported.

This is the first day of the week-long registration period for the elections.

However, a third likely candidate, Prabowo Subianto has not yet chosen his vice-president, let alone registered for the elections.

Land rover & floating mini hut arrive at KPU

Former Jakarta governor Anies, 54, an independent, and his VP candidate, National Awakening Party (PKB) chairman Muhaimin Iskandar, 57, were the first pair to register. 

Both Anies and Muhaimin arrived at KPU first in a white, classic, open-top land rover, Tempo reported. The pair wore matching outfits.

Image via A Muhaimin Iskandar/Facebook.

Anies spoke to the media about his election pitch, saying he wanted to ensure "equal opportunity" for jobs, healthcare and a better life through education, Tempo reported.

Later, member of the ruling party Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) and former Central Java governor Ganjar Pranowo, 54, arrived to register for the elections.

He was with his VP candidate Mohammad Mahfud MD, 66, who is also the country's current Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs.

Ganjar and Mahfud arrived on the back of a white truck which had been decorated into a float resembling a mini hut.

They were accompanied by a marching band and dancers in traditional Indonesian outfits, CNA reported.

Image via Ganjar Pranowo/Facebook.

Ganjar said that he would build on the accomplishments of the current president Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, and continue the "good things" achieved by the government.

Awaiting Prabowo's VP candidate

Prabowo Subianto, 72, and the current Indonesian defence minister, has not yet registered for the elections. Neither has he officially chosen his running mate to be his VP candidate.

However, Jokowi's oldest son Gibran Rakabuming Raka, 36, is among the "strongest" contender for the running-mate position.

Controversy has arisen after Jokowi's oldest son Gibran Rakabuming Raka was legally allowed to run as a vice-presidential candidate by an Indonesian court ruling on Oct. 17.

The law previously stated that presidential and vice-presidential candidates must be at least 40 years old to run for these offices.

However, the court, whose chief judge is Jokowi's brother-in-law, ruled that an exception can be made for candidates under the age of 40 if they have previously held elected regional office.

The ruling has been widely criticised as "nepotistic".

However, Jokowi refuted the accusation that he was trying to create a political dynasty, adding that he has not seen his son for several months, CNBC Indonesia reported.

Gibran in green shirt on the left. Image via @prabowo/Instagram.

Jokowi appointed former special forces general Prabowo as Indonesia's defence minister after Prabowo lost twice to him as a rival candidate in the two previous presidential elections.

However, Jokowi is not allowed to seek a third five-year term in the upcoming elections, according to Indonesia's constitution. He is expected to leave the office in October 2024 after the elections.

Apart from Gibran, East Java governor Khofifah Indar Parawansa, 58, State-owned Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir, 53, as well as Coordinating Minister for Economics Airlangga Hartarto, 61, are also contenders for the position of Prabowo's running-mate.

A final decision will be made at a meeting of all party chiefs in Prabowo's seven-party alliance in the coming days.

While it is not known when Prabowo will name his vice-presidential candidate, he must do so before 11:59pm on Oct. 25, when the registration period for the presidential election closes.

More than 205 million local and overseas Indonesians will vote for their next president on Feb. 14, 2024.

Top image from Ganjar Pranowo/Facebook & A Muhaimin Iskandar/Facebook.

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