National

Wiranto ready for presidency

Former Indonesian Military (TNI) chief and People’s Conscience Party (Hanura) chairman Wiranto said Wednesday that he was ready to run for president in the 2014 election.

“I am always ready to serve my country,” the former defense minister said.

He added, however, that he had yet to appoint his running mate. “It is too early to discuss who should become my running mate. Let’s see the political situation ahead of the 2014 general election,” he said as quoted by Antara news agency.

In the 2009 election, Wiranto was vice presidential candidate for Jusuf Kalla. The pair lost to two other candidate pairs: Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono-Boediono and Megawati Soekarnoputri-Prabowo Subianto.

Yudhoyono won his reelection bid after securing 60.80 percent of the vote in the second round.

Ahead of the 2014 election, analysts have said that former military generals would be strong contenders in the presidential race.

The Charta Politika think tank said that Army chief of staff Gen. Pramono Edhie Wibowo, former commander of the Army's Special Forces (Kopassus), Lt. Gen. (ret.) Prabowo Subianto, and former TNI chief Gen. (ret.) Wiranto would attract a significant number of votes.

Other former military generals expected to join the presidential race include Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Djoko Suyanto and former TNI chief Gen. (ret.) Endriartono Sutarto, who is reportedly about to join the National Democratic Party (NasDem). (lfr)

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