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Jakarta Post

PKB rift: Gus Dur fails to tame his own greed

  • Mohammad Yazid

Jakarta   /   Wed, April 9 2008   /  11:20 am

The image of Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), the largest Islamic organization in Indonesia and probably in the world, founded by Hasyim Asy'ari on Jan. 13, 1926, is hanging in the balance. This is because, among other things, one of Hasyim's grandchildren, Abdurrahman "Gus Dur" Wahid, has imitated the authoritarianism of Soeharto -- the former New Order ruler he consistently criticized -- in settling a conflict within the National Awakening Party (PKB), set up by Gus Dur and other NU clerics. The PKB cannot be separated from the NU, which was also chaired by Gus Dur before he became the country's fourth president in 1999. One of his daughters, Yenny Zannuba Wahid, the PKB's secretary-general, is alleged to have been considerably involved in this dispute. Tragically still, the evidently undemocratic stance was not resisted by his supporters, particularly those withi...