In the final push before Wednesday’s election, Prabowo Subianto and Joko Widodo (Jokowi) spent the weekend touting their Islam credentials to the world’s largest Muslim country. About nine out of ten voters have already decided who they will vote for on July 9th, but that still leaves more than 15 million citizens who haven’t decided. Masmus, a 55-year-old fruit seller is one of those, and says, “I see that Prabowo is a firm person, but I also like Jokowi because he’s close to the people.” He said he’ll chose “the one I think cares more about the little people like me.” Prabowo is a wealthy member of the Jakarta elite and connected to Suharto, the late authoritarian ruler. Jokowi, on the other hand, is a one-time mayor who rose in the democratic era, and is known for cutting red tape and improving government services.
This election is very different from any other in the past. There has been no escaping the election, with messages on the phone, every news station, and national newspaper, as well as at the newspaper. An English-language newspaper, the Jakarta Post, became the first mainstream media outlet ever to make a public endorsement of a candidate, supporting Jokowi.
Pray for the election! It’s July 9th, but voters in other places have until July 14th to mail in their ballots.
To see more details about the candidates and the elections, read this article.