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Jakarta Post

Islamist groups to rally against Anies for 'turning his back' on Rizieq

  • Fachrul Sidiq

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, March 19, 2018   /   12:31 pm
Islamist groups to rally against Anies for 'turning his back' on Rizieq   Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan speaks to journalists in this Jan. 5 file photograph, taken after his meeting with Bank Indonesia Governor Agus Martowardojo at the central bank's Jakarta headquarters. (JP/Anton Hermansyah)

An Islamist group calling itself the Revolutionary Islamic Community Forum (FUIR) plans to stage a rally on Monday against Governor Anies Baswedan, who it accuses of turning his back on the ummah (Muslim community) after his election.

The rally, which will take place at the Jakarta Legislative Council (DPRD) in Central Jakarta, will involve around 200 people from several Islamic organizations in the city, said rally coordinator M. Al Fatih.

“We feel that Anies and [Deputy Governor] Sandiaga Uno have forgotten about and distanced themselves from the ummah that supported them tirelessly [during the gubernatorial election],” he said.  

Anies is widely seen to have ridden the Islamist wave to win last year's gubernatorial election while his main rival, Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama, became the target of sectarian rhetoric in a series of rallies organized by Islamist groups in the months leading up to election day.

Fatih claimed that Anies had done nothing to defend Rizieq Shihab, the leader of the Islam Defenders Front (FPI), who fled to Saudi Arabia after being implicated in a pornography case.

Rizieq was a key figure behind the rallies against Ahok, and Fatih believed that the pornography case against the firebrand cleric was politically motivated.

During his campaign, Anies visited the FPI’s headquarters and met with Rizieq, sparking criticism from among his detractors as well as his more progressive supporters. Anies, however, said he was only trying to give all elements of society the chance for a dialogue with their gubernatorial candidate.

FPI spokesperson Slamet Maarif said the FUIR “was not among the groups involved in the 212 rally”. He was referring to Dec. 2, when a large anti-Ahok rally took place. He stopped short of confirming whether the FPI endorsed the FUIR's planned rally. (fac/ahw)