JAKARTA— Indonesian presidential frontrunner Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has picked former vice president Jusuf Kalla as his running mate for July's election, a senior party official said on Monday.
A coalition of four parties led by Jokowi's Indonesian Democratic Party-Struggle (PDI-P) gathered in central Jakarta to make the announcement.
“After meeting all the party chairpersons... it was agreed on Jusuf Kalla,” PDI-P vice secretary general Tjahjo Kumolo told reporters.
Recent opinion polls show a Jokowi-Kalla ticket is by far the most popular pairing for the July 9 election.
Candidates and their running mates must be registered by May 20. If no candidate wins more than 50 percent of the vote in first round, there will be a second round in September.
Kalla served as vice president during current leader Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's first term in office from 2004 to 2009, where he gained the reputation of being a can-do politician. More recently, the 72-year-old businessman from the east of the country has been head of the Indonesian Red Cross.