Two presidential candidates registered their bids for Indonesia’s elections in four months, officially kicking off the race for the nation’s top office.
(Bloomberg) — Two presidential candidates registered their bids for Indonesia’s elections in four months, officially kicking off the race for the nation’s top office.
Former Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan and his running mate Muhaimin Iskandar were the first to hand in their registration documents at the Election Commission’s office on Thursday. Outside, thousands of supporters paraded the streets, cheering the pair as they entered the building.
A few hours later, former Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo and his vice presidential nominee — senior security minister Mahfud MD — submitted their bids, also witnessed by thousands of cheering fans.
The elections to be held on Feb. 14 next year is pivotal for the world’s fourth-most populous nation as well as foreign investors, who will closely watch whether the next government will continue or upend incumbent President Joko Widodo’s — better known as Jokowi — key policies that include constructing a new $34 billion capital city and a push for onshore minerals processing.
Jokowi has said his successor needs to adopt his reforms for Indonesia to reach 7% economic growth by 2027 to 2028.
Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto is the other contender. He has yet to announce his running mate and submit a formal bid before registration closes on Oct. 25.
As it stands, the race is neck and neck between Prabowo — who lost the last two presidential races to Jokowi — and Ganjar, with both men topping various opinion polls.
Jokowi has yet to declare his support for any of the candidates. With his approval ratings at an all time high, his endorsement is crucial to aspiring leaders given his ability to galvanize public support behind his preferred successor.
While Ganjar, initially seen as Jokowi’s preferred successor, was considered as a shoo-in for the nation’s top office, Prabowo’s momentum has been building rapidly in the last few months after gaining support from more political parties.
The incumbent president’s relationship with former rival Prabowo has also blossomed in recent months, with both men seen attending various events together.
–With assistance from Chandra Asmara.
(Updates with Ganjar’s candidate registration in third paragraph.)
More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.