Headlines

As rumors of Prabowo reunion
swirl, Jokowi rocks stadium

Showdown: Presidential debate moderator Sudharto P. Hadi (center) is flanked by presidential candidates and their running mates Hatta Rajasa (left) and Prabowo Subianto (second left) and Joko Widodo (second right) and Jusuf Kalla at their fifth and final debate at the Bidakara Hotel in Tebet, South Jakarta, on Saturday. (JP/DON)
Showdown: Presidential debate moderator Sudharto P. Hadi (center) is flanked by presidential candidates and their running mates Hatta Rajasa (left) and Prabowo Subianto (second left) and Joko Widodo (second right) and Jusuf Kalla at their fifth and final debate at the Bidakara Hotel in Tebet, South Jakarta, on Saturday. (JP/DON)

The hopes of supporters of Gerindra Party presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto to witness the candidate reunite with ex-wife Siti Hediati “Titiek” Hariyadi were dashed on Saturday with no confirmation available that a ceremony had taken place to retie the knot.

Speculation had been mounting for days that the former couple would remarry, especially after the two publicly appeared together during recent presidential debates and on the campaign trail.

Media reports said that Sandiaga Uno, a campaigner for the Prabowo-Hatta Rajasa camp, had confirmed that a ceremony would take place at Istiqlal Mosque on Saturday.

Tempo.co reported that a security guard had received word on Saturday that Prabowo would visit the mosque, however he did not show up.

Text messages also circulated saying: “The marriage procession between Prabowo and Titiek Soeharto at Istiqlal Mosque will air live on tvOne and RCTI at 9 a.m. today. Enjoy the show.”

Prabowo Media Center coordinator Budi Purnomo Karjodihardjo said that he had not received any official information about the ceremony, let alone plans to televise the event nationally.

“Regarding the marriage of Pak Prabowo and Mbak Titiek at Istiqlal, we can say that there is no official information to date,” Budi said, as quoted by tribunnews.com.

While the Prabowo-Hatta camp was busy responding to rumors about family matters, Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) presidential candidate Joko “Jokowi” Widodo received the rock star treatment as he took the stage at Bung Karno Stadium in Senayan, Central Jakarta.

Jokowi’s appearance marked his last outdoor campaign event as beginning Sunday, the country officially enters the cooling-off period.

In his speech to a full-capacity stadium, Jokowi read text from what he billed “Maklumat from Jokowi-JK” (Order from Jokowi-JK).

In the speech, Jokowi expressed his gratitude for the overwhelming support and called on his supporters to guard against possible violations and vote-rigging on election day.

“I have never been this proud before and I am very proud of all of you who have worked so hard to make changes in Indonesia. You are all making history,” he said.

Jokowi called on his supporters, particularly the younger generation, to play an active role in the July 9 election.

“The younger generation will determine the future of this country. We are one step closer now,” he said.

Jokowi also promised that, should he be elected, he would work hard every day to fulfill people’s expectations.

Prior to his speech, some of the biggest names in the country’s music scene delivered rousing performances.

Some of the performers, namely rock and roll band Slank, guitar legend Ian Antono and other performers such as /Rif, Yovie and the Nuno, Kahitna, Oppie Andaresta, Kartika Jahja, JFlow, Kill the DJ, Edo Kondologit, encouraged the audience to vote for Jokowi on July 9.

Filmmaker Mira Lesmana said that artists, performers and creative workers behind the show had voluntarily teamed up for the Salam Dua Jari, or Two Finger Salute, concert to support Jokowi and Kalla, in the belief that their administration would pay more attention to the creative industry.

“We know that he will let the art scene thrive because we are all aware of his fondness of the arts. He goes to music concerts, he goes to Srimulat [famous comedy group] gigs and he mentions the creative industry in his programs. Creative workers wish to have a president who appreciates art,” Mira said.

Separately, the Democratic Party reiterated its support for the Prabowo-Hatta ticket, using the last day of the campaign “to remind” all of its members and supporters across the country to cast their ballots for the pair.

The message was conveyed by the party’s executive chairman, Syariefuddin “Syarief” Hasan, at a press conference on Saturday.

When asked about the actual stance of party chairman President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Syarief only said that he never openly declared his support for Prabowo.

“He is the President and must stand by all groups in Indonesia. And as an individual, declaring support means casting a vote at a polling station ”. (tjs)

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