The 2017 Jakarta gubernatorial election campaign lacks effective discussion of new ideas and policies by the three candidate pairs, a pundit said. (Antara Photo/Rosa Panggabean)

Jakarta Gubernatorial Election Campaign Lacks Debate of Ideas, Policies: Pundit

BY :CARLOS KY PAATH

DECEMBER 29, 2016

Jakarta. The 2017 Jakarta gubernatorial election campaign lacks effective discussion of new ideas and policies by the three candidate pairs, a pundit said.

Theo L. Sambuaga, National Expert Board chairman of the alumni association of the Indonesian Students' Movement (PA GMNI), said the current political situation has heated up and become increasingly unstable ahead of the gubernatorial election.

"The regional election campaign began in October and will continue until Feb. 15, so it is a shame it has been used not as an opportunity to debate ideology and policy but instead focus on the emotional factors and temporary practical interests of the candidates," Theo said.

Speaking at a conference in Jakarta on Thursday (29/12), Theo said the capital has been overtaken by a social media frenzy over public pressure on incumbent Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama.

"Jakarta's political arena is filled with slander, intrigue and negativity, giving rise to the exploitation of race, religion and ethnicity, which is especially shown by the mass pressure on Basuki Tjahaja Purnama," Theo said.

"If the situation is not handled well, we could see various social and political conflicts erupt," he added.

Theo said regional and general elections should be based on the principles of sovereignty, as democratic practices should be healthy and based on the law.

"Our democratic system, which we are continuously working on to consolidate and perfect, has become a firm foundation for the healthy and orderly transition of leadership," he said.

Theo also highlighted he issue of transactional money politics.

"Money politics is still one of the elements that has tainted the election process," he said.

He said he wished for the certainties of law and supervision, and improvement of democracy to embody the people's sovereignty and roles.

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