The Jakarta Post
Supporters of presidential hopeful Prabowo Subianto and his running mate Sandiaga Uno plan to gather around the National Monument (Monas) on Friday afternoon to celebrate the peaceful election held two days earlier.
Campaign team spokesman Andre Rosiade said on Thursday that his team was currently planning the event, and that the gathering would take place after Friday prayers at Istiqlal Mosque.
"[The event] is only to celebrate the fact that the election was held peacefully, because we are feeling grateful for it,” Andre told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.
On Wednesday night, Slamet Ma’arif, the chairman of an organization calling itself 212 Rally Alumni, which has backed the Prabowo-Sandiaga ticket, called on all supporters to gather at Istiqlal Mosque and Monas for prayers, after claiming earlier that their presidential hopeful had won the election, a view shared inside the challenger’s camp and reported by some surveys and volunteers in the regions.
According to messages spread through social media, such as Whatsapp groups, the camp plans to hold a "victory celebration" at Monas starting 7:30 p.m. The possibility of such a plan has caused some concern about the security of Good Friday services at nearby churches. Andre denied any knowledge of such a plan.
Despite the rumors, the Jakarta Cathedral and the GPIB Immanuel church, which are located near Istiqlal Mosque, will conduct their Good Friday services as planned.
Jakarta Cathedral spokeswoman Susiana Suwadie expressed hope that the mass would proceed without any disruption.
Meanwhile, the chairwoman of the GPIB Immanuel Church Assembly, Rev. Michiko Pinaria Saren, said her concerns were more about the traffic. She said she would inform the congregation about possibility traffic disruption.
“If the event will be held, it will certainly have an impact on access to the church, which will be stagnant or totally jammed,” she told the Post.
On Thursday, Jakarta Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. Argo Yuwono said he had yet to receive any notification about the Prabowo camp’s plan for a celebration at Monas. (das)