The lineup of political parties for the 2019 General Elections is starting to look like a revival of the Cendana Family. One son and a daughter of former President Suharto are heading new political parties each ,while a former son-in-law, Prabowo heads one of the strongest opposition parties.

The stage is heating up for the General Elections in for April 2019. The Elections Commission (Komisi Pemilihan Umum/KPU) have announced the parties which are eligible to participate. These parties are:

  1. National Awakening Party (PKB)
  2. Indonesian Movement Party (Partai Gerindra)
  3. Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP)
  4. Functional Group Party (Partai Golkar)
  5. National Democrat Party (Partai Nasdem)
  6. Indonesian Movement for Change Party (Partai Garuda)
  7. Working Party (Partai Berkarya)
  8. Prosperous Justice Party (PKS)`
  9. Indonesian Unity Party (Partai Perindo)
  10. United Development Party (PPP)
  11. Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI)
  12. National Mandate Party (PAN)
  13. People’s Conscience Party (Partai Hanura)
  14. Democratic Party (Partai Demokrat)

There were only four new parties in this lineup:

Indonesia Movement for Change Party 

The patron of this party, founded on 16 April 2015, is former President Suharto eldest daughter Tutut or Siti Hardiyanti Rukmana. Its Chairman is Ridha Sabana, who is also President Director of PT Cipta Televisi Pendidikan Indonesia (TPI), a TV station controlled by Tutut.

TPI is currently changing its name to MNC TV, even as a dispute between Tutut and Hary Tanoe as the owner of MNC Group rages on. Hary Tanoe won the case at the National Arbitrage Institution (Badan Arbitrase Nasional/BANI) while Tutut won the decision of the Supreme Court (Mahkamah Agung/MA). The case is still under the investigation.

The party’s Secretary-General is Abdullah Mansyuri who is also the Head of the Indonesian Association of Market Traders (Ikatan Pedagang Pasar Indonesia/IKAPPI)

Working Party

The Working Party is a reincarnation of the National Republic Party which had failed to pass the verification test by the General Election Commission (KPU) for the 2014 general elections. As with the case of the National Republic Party, this party is controlled by another Soeharto scion, Tommy Soeharto. The youngest son of Suharto is ostensibly the Party Advisor and the party headquarters is situated in a building formerly occupied by PT Pecatu Graha that was owned by Tommy. Its Chairman is Neneng A. Tutty , and its Secretary General is Badaruddin Andi Picunang.

Neneng A. Tutty is a former film actress who was popular in the mid-1980s. Her involvement in politics included leading the Laskar Merah Putih (The Red-and-White Force) which also had Tommy Suharto as chairman of its Board of Patrons. After that, Neneng A Tutty then became Chairperson of the National Republic Party that now has transformed into the Working Party.

Meanwhile, Badaruddin Andi Picunang is a former Golkar politician with his last post being a Deputy Secretary General of AMPI Golkar in 2015.

Indonesia Solidarity Party

This is probably the most jaman now political party with high profile ex-TVOne news presenter Grace Natalie taking the helm. The party is aiming to attract votes from the younger generation and those that embrace a moderate religious view. Twitter and Facebook are their main platforms to rally support and they have been busy popularizing hashtags like #Merdeka100persen during the 70th Indonesian Independence Day and #KepoinPilkada during the Local Elections in 2015. They also make strong claims of financial transparency and independence from business interests.

Most of its members are between 20 and 30 years old and they have set the cutoff age for membership is 45. The party also try to avoid the image of the party being associated with one figure. Instead they have several prominent young leaders among them, such as:

  • Isyana Bagoes Oka (ex-news presenter)
  • Tsamara Amany (a young politician, who came under public spotlight following a war of tweets with Fahri Hamzah on corruption eradication.)
  • Giring Ganesha (Nidji Vocalist)
  • Mohamad Guntur Romli (NU Activist)
  • Hariyanto Arbi (Badminton Athlete)

Indonesia Union Party

The leader of this party, Hary Tanoesoedibjo, needs no introduction. The media mogul founded the party after disagreements with the leaders of first Nasdem and then Hanura parties.

Written by Iwan Kurniawan,  Maverick’s consultant as part of the Maverick’s effort to understand the current affairs

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