ASIA/INDONESIA - Elections in Jakarta: Christian governor, defeated. But his trial for blasphemy continues

Friday, 21 April 2017 sectaniarism   politics   elections  


Jakarta (Agenzia Fides) - "Power comes from God and it could be taken by God. No one comes to power without God’s permission. Don’t be sad. God knows". With these words, implicitly quoting the Gospel and St. Paul ("omnis potestas a Deo", Rm 13, 1), the Governor of Jakarta, Protestant Christian Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama tried to comfort his supporters, embittered after Ahok himself recognized his defeat in the ballot election on 19 April. The opponent is Anies Baswedan to be re-elected Jakarta's next governor.
After the closing of the seats, a quick count showed that Anies won around 58 percent of the vote.
He congratulated Anies and Sandiaga, their campaign team and supporters. The Protestant governor also promised to help Anies Baswedan, a Muslim backed by radical groups, in the transition process and would accelerate his programs until the end of his term in October. "It is our hope" said Ahok at a press conference held at a hotel in the Indonesian capital "that all sides will forget the election campaign and Jakarta election. We’re actually the same, we want Jakarta to be better because it is our common home". The Jakarta governor then called on his supporters to move on from the election, which has been seen by many as the most sectarian and divisive in the city’s history.
Anies and Sandiaga also appreciated Ahok-Djarot for their participation in ensuring Wednesday’s election a worthy democratic process. They called on Ahok-Djarot and their supporters to work together with them to fix all the damages caused during their election campaigns and to cooperate in building Jakarta.
Meanwhile, on Thursday, April 20, Ahok returned to court, the 19th trial session over his blasphemy case since the first hearing last December. During the session, public prosecutors demanded the North Jakarta District Court sentence Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama to one year in jail with to two years of probation, if he is found guilty of spreading hatred. (Agenzia Fides, 21/4/2017) (PCP/GV)