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Jakarta Post

Zulkifli Hasan inaugurated as new speaker of People'€™s Consultative Assembly

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, October 8, 2014   /  01:00 pm

Supreme Court Chief Justice Hatta Ali swore in Zulkifli Hasan of the National Mandate Party (PAN) as the speaker of the People'€™s Consultative Assembly (MPR) for the 2014-2019 period on Wednesday, along with four new deputy speakers.

The four deputies are Mahyuddin of the Golkar Party, E.E. Mangindaan of the Democratic Party, Hidayat Nur Wahid of the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) and Oesman Sapta Odang of the Regional Representatives Council (DPD).

In his first speech as the 14th speaker of the MPR, Zulkifli promised that he would uphold the interests of the entire nation, and not solely the interest of his backers, the Red-and-White Coalition led by losing presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto. Prabowo lost to president-elect Joko '€œJokowi'€ Widodo in the July 9 election.

'€œThere is no agenda for package A [Jokowi'€™s coalition] and package B [Prabowo'€™s coalition]. [My only agenda] is the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia,'€ Zulkifli said as quoted by Antara News Agency.

Zulkifli, a 52-year-old Lampung-based former forestry minister, promised not to impede the inauguration of Jokowi and vice president-elect Jusuf Kalla, which is set to be conducted on Oct. 20. The new speaker promised that he would ensure the success of the inauguration for the sake of Indonesia.

In the early hours of Wednesday, Prabowo'€™s coalition beat Jokowi'€™s coalition in the MPR speakership race. Zulkifli, along with his deputies, was named champion after the Red-and-White Coalition garnered 347 votes, compared with 330 votes for Jokowi'€™s coalition. The latter proposed Oesman as MPR speaker with four deputies, namely Ahmad Basarah of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), Imam Nahrawi of the National Awakening Party (PKB), Patrice Rio Capella of the NasDem Party and Hazrul Azhar of the United Development Party.On Oct. 2, Prabowo'€™s camp also beat Jokowi to win the speakership of the House of Representatives (DPR). Setya Novanto of the Golkar Party became speaker with four deputies, namely Fadli Zon of the Gerindra Party, Fahri Hamzah of the Prosperous Justice Party, Taufik Kurniawan of the National Mandate Party and Agus Hermanto of the Democratic Party. (alz)