Jakarta lacks critical mass: Independent candidate
Jakarta lacks a critical mass in the middle class — a group of people that might potentially vote for independent gubernatorial candidates, Jakarta independent governor candidate Faisal Basri says.
“Middle-class people are financially independent and have a progressive ideology. They pay taxes and are critical of the government and political parties,” Faisal said Wednesday during a visit to The Jakarta Post offices.
However, he said, some middle-class people were apathetic and acted only as “democracy consumers” instead of “democracy producers”.
“They are critical of the ruling administration but don’t want to participate in the democratic process [by voting]. They can mostly be found in social media and are relatively reachable for independent [gubernatorial] candidates,” he said.
Faisal predicted that should these people be willing to cast their votes on election day, they would vote for independent candidates.
The middle class accounts for one-third of the Jakarta population, he said.
More than 7 million voters on the preliminary list will be eligible to participate in the Jakarta gubernatorial election on July 11.
Faisal and his running mate, Jakarta Legislative Council member Biem Benjamin, along with retired military police chief Hendardji Soepandji and politician Ahmad Riza Patria, are contesting the election without support from any political party.
The other candidates in the race are the incumbent Governor Fauzi Bowo and running mate Maj. Gen. (ret.) Nachrowi Ramli; Hidayat Nurwahid and economist Didik J. Rachbini; South Sumatra Governor Alex Noerdin and former marine Lt. Gen. (ret.) Nono Sampono; and Surakarta Mayor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and former Golkar lawmaker Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama.