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Jakarta Post

Making 'frenemies' can help win polls in Indonesia

  • Marchio Irfan Gorbiano

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, November 24, 2020   /  05:02 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Medical workers carry a voter who had fainted during a simulation for the upcoming regional election in Banyuwangi, East Java, on Sept. 14. The simulation was held as part of preparations for the 2020 simultaneous regional elections set to take place in 270 regions across Indonesia on Dec. 9. (Antara/Budi Candra Setya)

Indonesia is set to hold regional elections amid the COVID-19 pandemic on Dec. 9, with 740 tickets competing for nine gubernatorial, 224 regental and 37 mayoral seats across the country. Politics at the regional level paints a different picture compared to the national political scene, with alliances deemed more fluid, rivals often becoming teammates and friends turning into opponents. The sole goal of the political parties is to win as many regional elections as they can, which, according to party executives, explains why members of the pro-government coalition at the House of Representatives often partner up with opposition parties in support of regional candidates. Popularity of prospective candidates matters most Party executives have said that local political landscapes, as well as the characteristics of each region and local figures also tend to play key roles in d...