News / Asia

Subianto to Challenge Widodo Victory in Indonesian Election

Indonesian President Joko Widodo talks to the media during his visit at a reservoir development project in Jakarta, Indonesia, July 22, 2014.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo talks to the media during his visit at a reservoir development project in Jakarta, Indonesia, July 22, 2014.
VOA News

Former army General Prabowo Subianto, who lost Indonesia's presidential election, said he would challenge the result at the country's Constitutional Court.

The move was announced by his spokesman on Wednesday, a day after the election commission named his rival, ex-Jakarta Governor Joko Widodo, the winner of the July 9 vote.

Subianto said Widodo's campaign took part in large-scale vote-buying and other fraud and accused the election commission of not doing its duty in investigating the claims.

The court challenge could about a month to complete. Most analysts think it will prove unsuccessful.

Edward Aspinall, an expert in Indonesian politics at the Australian National University, told VOA it would be difficult for the court to overturn a six-point difference in the final results.

"I think the chances are pretty much close to zero.  And there would be no precedent in recent Indonesian electoral history of a Constitutional Court overturning a result to that extent,” Aspinall said.  He also suggested the fraud allegations, “from what we can see, don't seem to be particularly strong."

There have been no reports of violence, though thousands of police and military forces have been deployed in the case of unrest.

Aspinall said many groups affiliated with Subianto have shown a willingness to use violence in the past, but he doubted whether that will be the case this time.

"My sense is that the further we go with the process, the chances of that sort of thing begin to diminish, partly because the coalition that coalesced around Prabowo during the election campaign is really starting to disintegrate," Aspinall said.

President-elect urges cohesion

Speaking Tuesday after the official results were released, Widodo, the president-elect with 53 percent of the vote, said it was time for the country to come together after a hard-fought campaign.

“I am certain that the struggle to achieve Indonesia that is sovereign, independent and true to our character can only be achieved if we work together. And now it is the time to work together," Widodo said.

World leaders have already begun applauding Widodo on his victory.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry issued a statement congratulating Widodo and saying Washington looks forward to working with the new Indonesian president.

The 53-year-old Widodo, also known by his nickname Jokowi, is seen by many as a reformer and a rare candidate without links to Indonesia's longtime dictator, Suharto, who was ousted in 1998 after 31 years. He died a decade later.

Subianto, a former son-in-law of Suharto, campaigned on a strong nationalist platform. 

Many were concerned he would steer the country in an authoritarian direction. During his time as an army general, he was accused of rights abuses, including overseeing the arrest of democracy activists.

Shaun Levine, a senior analyst for South East Asia at the Eurasia Group, said  Widodo's outsider status would help increase the field of candidates in future elections.

"For Joko Widodo to win the election by the margin that he did, in the sense that going forward that you will have more of an opportunity for political outsiders to join in the elections and become a member of parliament president, is very positive for Indonesia," Levine said.

Indonesia is the world's most populous Muslim country, with 250 million residents, and has Southeast Asia's biggest economy.

VOA's Bill Gallo contributed to this report, which was produced in collaboration with the VOA Indonesian service.

You May Like

Unpaid Kurdish Fighters Sign of Economic Woes

Sharp cuts in Kurdistan's budget by Baghdad, falling oil revenue, coping with refugees, inflated public sector have hit regional economy hard More

Koreas Exchange List of Envoys for Family Reunion Talks

Officials will discuss date, venue and number of participants for reunion; Seoul hopes to hold event late this month More

China Targets 197 in Online Speech Crackdown

Nearly 200 punished for 'spreading rumors' online in ongoing crackdown on free speech More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisisi
X
Lisa Bryant
September 02, 2015 6:19 PM
Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisis

Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Russia-Japan Relations Cool as Putin Visits China for WWII Anniversary

Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Beijing for commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China's WWII victory over Japan. Putin is expected to visit Japan later this year, but tensions between Tokyo and Moscow over islands disputed since the war, and sanctions over Ukraine, could pour cold water on the plan. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Kurdish Fighters on IS Frontline Ready for Offensive

Finger on the trigger, the Kurdish Peshmerga soldier stared across the dust at a village taken over by Islamic State extremists. The Kurdistan’s Khazir frontline, just 45 minutes from the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul. And at this point, the militants were less than two kilometers away. VOA's Sharon Behn reports.
Video

Video Yemen ‘on Brink of Disaster’ as Medical Shortages Soar

Aid agencies warn Yemen is on the brink of humanitarian disaster – with up to half a million children facing severe malnutrition, and hospitals running out of basic medicines. There are fears Yemen's civil war could escalate as the coalition led by Saudi Arabia tries to drive back Houthi rebels, who seized control of much of the country earlier this year. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Apps Helping Kenyan Businesses Stay Ahead of Counterfeiters

Counterfeit goods in Kenya cost the government as much as $1 billion each year in lost tax revenues. The fake goods also hurt entrepreneurs who find it hard to carve out a niche in the market and retain customers. But as Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi, information technology is being used to try to beat the problem.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.

VOA Blogs