The Jakarta Post
The National Mandate Party (PAN) is mulling a plan to endorse its chairman, Zulkifli Hasan, who is also speaker of the People’s Consultative Assembly (MPR), to run in the 2019 presidential election as either a presidential or a vice presidential candidate.
The decision is expected to be announced on the last day of the party’s national meeting on Wednesday in Bandung, West Java.
“We’re considering our chairman to be either a presidential or vice presidential candidate in 2019 and we hope he can be accepted by the people,” PAN deputy secretary-general Saleh Partaonan Daulay said on the second day of the meeting on Tuesday, as quoted by kompas.com.
Zulkifli, he said, was fit to be a national leader given his experience as a lawmaker and environment minister during the administration of president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono
“Many [party] members want Zulkifli to run in 2019. But we are also open to the possibility of endorsing others,” Saleh added.
The pro-government party, however, refused to reveal whether it would lend its support to President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo for his reelection bid in 2019.
PAN’s decision to not invite Jokowi to the meeting has also intensified speculation of conflict with the government.
Unlike PAN, other parties in the government camp, for instance the Hanura Party and the United Development Party (PPP), invited Jokowi to recent meetings, during which they endorsed the President’s reelection. (foy/ipa)