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Indonesia's presidential loser seeks re-election in Jakarta

Tan KW
Publish date: Sat, 15 Jun 2024, 12:07 AM
Tan KW
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JAKARTA: Indonesia's defeated presidential candidate Anies Baswedan announced he will run for Jakarta governor in a November vote, ending speculation about whether the opposition politician would seek to win back his old job.

Baswedan, who served as Jakarta governor from 2017 to 2022, was trounced in February presidential elections by former special forces commander Prabowo Subianto after running on a platform of change.

The former education minister confirmed on Friday that he would seek re-election in Jakarta, backed by the National Awakening Party (PKB).

"I've been entrusted by the PKB," he told reporters after Friday prayers in South Jakarta.

"Therefore I say in the name of God, we are getting ready to head for a second period."

Baswedan remains a popular figure in the city of over 10 million people and his decision to run is likely to vex Prabowo's big-tent coalition government.

Local media has reported that Baswedan may be up against popular former West Java governor, Ridwan Kamil.

Baswedan won less than 25 per cent of the votes in the national election after running a campaign critical of outgoing president Joko Widodo, accusing him of overseeing a period of democratic decline.

In March he contested the results at the country's constitutional court, claiming the vote was not free and fair.

The court rejected the case and upheld the results, which showed that Defence Minister and ex-commander Prabowo won with almost 60 per cent of the vote.

Prabowo will be inaugurated in October and after winning on a platform promising "continuity" and is closely aligned to Widodo.

 -Reuters

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