War of Words: The Jokowi Vs Prabowo Debates


Images courtesy of JKW4P.com and SelamatkanIndonesia.com

It will be a dead heat, the most frequent debates on Indonesia’s presidential race ever!

By: Sahrudin – @SahrudinSaja

JUST a few weeks remain before the sweepstakes sure to lure the largest audience of the presidential campaign: Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) candidate Joko Widodo going one-on-one with Prabowo Subijanto from Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra) on prime-time television debates organized by Indonesia’s General Elections Commission (KPU). 

Jokowi, the nickname by which Joko Widodo is universally known, and Jusuf Kalla, his vice-presidential candidate, will get into a series of five times wars of words with Prabowo and his running mate Hatta Rajasa, and air on six national TVs.

The program will unquestionably become a new record number of times on Indonesia’s presidential debates.

After the end of Soeharto’s New Order regime, in the previous three presidential elections (in 1999, 2004, and 2009) the debates were usually only held to a maximum of three times.

The first debate between Prabowo and Jokowi will be broadcast live on SCTV, June 8.

A week later, June 15, vice-presidential nominees will engage in arguments on Metro TV.

Another debate between the two presidential candidates will air on TV One, June 22.

Standing behind their podiums, again, Jusuf Kalla and Hatta Rajasa will argue in front of a live audience of RCTI, on June 29.

On final day of campaigning, July 5, both sets of candidates are all set to thrash out their views live on Kompas TV and state-owned TVRI.

Jokowi, with 72-year-old former vice president Jusuf Kalla, had been expected to saunter to victory in Indonesia’s presidential election by his own PDI-P and its coalition parties: the National Democratic (Nasdem), the National Awakening Party (PKB) and the Hanura.

On the other hand, knowing that major political parties such as the National Mandate Party (PAN), the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS), the United Development Party (PPP) and the Golkar Party have chosen to side with Gerindra, Prabowo remains a far-reaching threat.

Now the ballot is clearly a two-horse race. No run-off needed as there are only two sets of candidates will contest the 2014-2019 presidential election on July 9th.***


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