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Indonesia at a crossroads

July 10th, 2014
08:33 AM ET

A tightly-fought presidential race has been underway in Indonesia – the third largest democracy in the world. Two very different candidates are offering up two very different futures.

And it's their personalities rather than their policies that seem to be grabbing the headlines.

On the one side is Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, a former furniture maker who's running on an anti-corruption ticket. On the other is Prabowo Subianto, a military man and former son-in-law of one-time dictator General Suharto, whose rhetoric is putting the country's recent hard-fought freedoms to test.

Author and writer Elizabeth Pisani, has just written “Indonesia etc,” a detailed account of life inside the world's fourth most populous country.

She spoke with CNN’s Michael Holmes, in for Christiane Amanpour, on Thursday.


Filed under:  Indonesia • Latest Episode
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. ashok

    One's vote would be for the humble furniture maker.

    July 10, 2014 at 12:41 pm | Reply
  2. andridokter

    another vote for the grumpy ex-general

    July 15, 2014 at 8:14 am | Reply
  3. ObserverInAsia

    Westerners generally misunderstand the meaning o a quick count. The quick count in this case refers to actual results of counted ballots from voting stations. This is not the same as an exit poll.

    The difference in results is only due to the inclusion of which of the polling stations are included.

    It is curious that eight polling agencies including all the ones with an established track record of polling accuracy gave Joko widodo a clear 4-5% margin of victory. The only polling agencies quoted by the prabowo camp have a questionable track record. Two of the four agencies have refused requests by the national polling authority to audit their methodology and are no longer recognized as such. The other two have never been recognized.

    There is no doubt that Joko widodo has won the election. What remains to be seen is if Prabowo camp has enough power and ability to add another 6-7M of so far unseen ballots to his tally in yet to be discovered polling boxes.

    Another dynamic is at play here. The bulk of the owners supporting prabowo are suspected of being corrupt and would suffer economic damage from a jokowi presidency - if he does carry through with the same policies he pursued as mayor of Solo and governor of Jakarta. Some though are lss tainted and are likely to switch - this is not the same. Indonesia as the Suharto days and there are limits to what he corrupt can buy.

    July 17, 2014 at 10:28 pm | Reply

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