Nur Azizah Rizki Astuti, Jakarta – The Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (KSPI) held its commemoration of International Labour Day or May Day 2019 at the Senayan Indoor Tennis Centre in Jakarta. Before giving a speech, KSPI President Said Iqbal called on the workers to raise the two finger salute representing presidential hopeful Prabowo Subianto.
“Raise your hands. Two fingers, meaning the one finger is not our friend”, said Iqbal on Wednesday May 1 referring to the one figure salute representing incumbent President Joko Widodo.
The workers all raised their two figures. Iqbal also invited the crowd of workers to give a shout of support for the presidential ticket 02 of Prabowo Subianto and running mate Sandiaga Uno.
“Who are we?” asked Iqbal.
“Prabowo-Sandi!” shouted the workers.
“Prabowo Subianto?” asked Iqbal again.
“The president of Indonesia!” answered the workers.
Iqbal along with the crowd of workers then sang the patriotic nationalist song Hello Hello Bandung and the workers marching song. Once again he rallied the workers.
“Viva the workers! Viva the people!” shouted Iqbal.
In his speech Iqbal encouraged the workers to not be afraid of fighting. He also touched on the issue of honest democracy.
“We want a democracy that is honest. It’s fine if you win, but don’t cheat. It’s fine if you win but don’t trample on the people’s vote. It will be impossible for truly honest policies to come into being if the elected [president] is a cheat. The policies of a leader who is elected by cheating will be dishonest and not side with the people”, said Iqbal.
On May Day last year, Said Iqbal and the KSPI officially declared their support for former Special Forces (Kopassus) commander retired General Prabowo Subianto in the 2019 presidential election. Prabowo – who now appears to have lost the election to incumbent President Joko Widodo – is continuing to claim victory, insisting that there was widespread election fraud and is calling on supporters to monitor the ongoing vote count.
In 2014 the KSPI also came behind Prabowo’s failed 2014 presidential bid and in 2017 they supported the Prabowo backed Anies Baswedan-Sandiaga Uno ticket in the religious and ethnically divisive Jakarta elections. This included taking part in protests by hard-line Islamic forces seeking to oust incumbent Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama – an ethnic Chinese Christian – who lost the election to Baswedan and was subsequently jailed on trumped up blasphemy charges.
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Orasi di May Day, Said Iqbal Ajak Buruh Salam 2 Jari”.]