The Jakarta Post
Gerindra Party chairman and presidential hopeful Prabowo Subianto is looking to project a laid-back public persona to attract young voters ahead of next year's election.
"Pak Prabowo will appear with a contemporary image, not just a change of clothing," National Mandate Party (PAN) deputy secretary-general Faldo Maldini said on Saturday as quoted by tempo.co.
Faldo said Prabowo would focus on how to carry himself and present his views in a way that would appeal to millennials, but declined to go into the details on the new Prabowo. "Just wait for it," he said.
Previously, Prabowo's running mate and former Jakarta deputy governor Sandiaga Uno had said that the former general would unveil "the new Prabowo" during the campaign to attract the youth vote.
According to data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS), about 80 million people under the age of 40 will be eligible to vote next year, making up nearly half of the electorate.
During the 2014 presidential race that Prabowo lost by around 8 million votes, he gained a reputation for being hot-headed and lashing out at journalists for what he perceived to be unfavorable coverage. Reports even claimed that he once threw a cellphone at a fellow politician.
"Pak Prabowo is a fun person. The new Prabowo is someone who is very relaxed," Sandiaga said. "Pak Prabowo has experienced our political dynamics and he understands that the democratic process must unite us, instead of tearing us apart.” (kmt)