The Jakarta Post
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has submitted the names of 31 ambassador candidates to House of Representatives Commission I overseeing defense and foreign affairs.
According to a copy of the list seen by The Jakarta Post, nine of the 31 candidates have nondiplomatic backgrounds, with the majority comprising politicians and supporters of Jokowi's 2019 presidential bid.
Former trade minister Muhammad Lutfi, who was on the Jokowi-Ma'ruf Amin campaign team, has been named as the ambassador candidate to the United States and Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) politician Heri Akhmadi is the ambassador candidate to Japan. Meanwhile, former Metro TV chief editor Suryopratomo has been touted as Indonesia's top diplomat in Singapore.
Meanwhile, Golkar Party politician Roem Kono is the ambassador candidate to Bosnia and Herzegovina and Hildi Hamid, the former regent of North Kayong, West Kalimantan, who was also on the Jokowi campaign team, is the ambassador candidate to Azerbaijan.
Jokowi has also named politicians from smaller parties who supported his reelection: Indonesian Justice and Unity Party (PKPI) treasurer and coal businessman Iwan Bogananta as the top envoy to Bulgaria, Albania and Macedonia, Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) politician Mohamad Irzan Djohan to Oman and Crescent Star Party (PBB) deputy chairman Sukmo Harsono as ambassador candidate to Panama, Honduras, Costa Rica and Nicaragua.
The ninth candidate is Army Maj. Gen. (ret) Imam Edy Mulyono, proposed as the ambassador to Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, Saint Lucia, Dominica and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
Commission I member Willy Aditya from the NasDem Party confirmed the veracity of the list of candidates, saying he received the same copy as the Post.
"Some of the [candidates] have a political background, but the majority are still Foreign Ministry officials," he told the Post on Monday.
He added that the House was scheduled to hold a confirmation hearing after its recess period on June 12.
List of ambassador candidates