The Jakarta Post
The Surakarta chapter of the Democratic Party has declared its support for President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's eldest son, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, in the upcoming Surakarta mayoral election in Central Java.
Supriyanto, the head of the Democratic Party's Surakarta chapter, said the party decided to back Gibran because he was a young figure who they believed could carry out programs quickly and on target.
“We support him unconditionally, because we want a fresh government,” Supriyanto said on Wednesday as quoted by kompas.com.
He said that former president and Democratic Party chairman Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono had also expressed his support for Gibran through the party's Central Java provincial chapter.
“We have given assurances to the people of Surakarta that Gibran is capable of leading the Surakarta administration,” Supriyanto added.
Interviewed separately, Gibran said he would take all the help that he could get. “I welcome all the support, from the parties, volunteers, citizens and everyone,” Gibran said.
Besides the Democrats, Gibran has also courted the support of his father's Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), which is considering pairing Gibran and Surakarta Deputy Mayor Achmad Purnomo, who had been tabbed as the party's nominee before Gibran threw his hat into the ring.
Meanwhile, the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), National Awakening Party's (PKB) and United Development Party (PPP) have also openly showed their support for Gibran’s election bid.
Gibran is not the only presidential relative gearing up to run the upcoming regional elections – Jokowi's son-in-law Bobby Nasution is also seeking support for his own mayoral bid in Medan, North Sumatra.
Gibran and Bobby's planned runs have triggered concerns that the former Surakarta mayor is building up a political dynasty, an accusation that Jokowi has denied. (hol)