Acquitted killer of rights defender Munir declares support for Widodo

CNN Indonesia – February 10, 2019
Working Party deputy chairperson Muchdi Purwopranjono (CNN)
Working Party deputy chairperson Muchdi Purwopranjono (CNN)

Jakarta – Supreme assembly member and deputy chairperson of Tommy Suharto’s Working Party, retired Major General Muchdi Purwopranjono has decided to support the presidential ticket of incumbent President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and running mate Amin Ma’ruf.

The former Army Special Forces (Kopassus) commander attended a goodwill meeting and declaration of support for Widodo by retired TNI (Indonesian military) and Polri (national police) officers at the Jakarta International Expo in Kemayoran, Jakarta, on Sunday February 10. He wore a white shirt with the writing Jokowi-Ma’ruf on the breast pocket.

“First because I see that Pak [Mr] Jokowi has already done a lot over the last five [sic] years”, said Muchdi.

Purwopranjono said that Widodo has been proven himself able to develop the country’s infrastructure, from toll roads, ports, airports, industry and other facilities.

According to Purwopranjono, the people of Indonesia are feeling the benefits of all this development. It is based on this that he decided to support Widodo, even though the Working Party officially backs the rival ticket of Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno.

“And no other president since reformasi [the political reform process that began in 1998] has ever done this”, he said.

Earlier on Sunday, 1,000 retired TNI and Polri officers declared their support for Widodo and Amin at the Jakarta International Expo. The officers present came from the army, navy, air force and retired national police officers from various forces and various parts of the country. (bmw/arh)


On September 7, 2004 renowned human rights defender Munir Said Thalib died of arsenic poisoning onboard a Garuda Indonesia flight. Although off-duty pilot Pollycarpus Priyanto was convicted of the murder in 2005, the alleged mastermind behind the assassination, former National Intelligence Agency (BIN) deputy Muchdi Purwopranjono, was acquitted of all charges. Purwopranjono was also the head of Kopassus in 1998 and was dismissed from the military along with Prabowo over the abduction of political activists in 1997-98.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Petinggi Partai Berkarya Muchdi PR Dukung Jokowi-Ma’ruf”.]