Survey group predicts 4 ideologies will contest the 2024 presidential race

CNN Indonesia – July 3, 2019
Indonesia Survey Circle founder Denny JA. (CNN)
Indonesia Survey Circle founder Denny JA. (CNN)

Jakarta – The Denny JA Indonesia Survey Circle (LSI) predicts that the presidential elections (pilpres) in 2024 will be enlivened by a contest between four different ideologies, namely reformasi, political Islam, the 1945 Constitution (UUD 1945) and human rights (HAM).

This ideological contest is predicted to take place bearing in mind that the 2024 presidential elections will involve new candidates because incumbent President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo is barred from running again.

“The 2024 pilpres will be further be enlivened because of two things. First these four ideologies will again be fighting it out. It may well be that all four will be stronger, have more experience. Then, there is no incumbent any more”, said the founder of LSI, Denny JA, at his office in East Jakarta on Tuesday July 2.

Denny explained that these four ideologies do indeed already exist in Indonesia and featured in the 2019 presidential election. According to Denny, this ideological contestation will continue even with the end of the political coalitions that backed Widodo and loosing presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto.

Denny explained that the ideology of reformasi represents a unique mix of several democratic ideologies. An example of this is the role of the state in religion which differentiates democracy in Indonesia with democratic ideas in the western world.

According to Denny, this ideology was first taken up by Indonesia’s third president, Suharto’s hand-picked successor BJ Habibie, as the first president in the era of reformasi – the political reform process that began in 1998. This ideology was continued by Presidents Abdurrahman Wahid alias Gus Dur, Megawati Sukarnoputri and Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

“This is a mainstream ideology. The PDI-P [Widodo’s ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle] is also there. The Golkar [Party] too. Also minority groups. In the 2019 pilpres, the majority of supporters of this ideology were in the Jokowi camp”, said Denny.

Denny said that the ideology of reformasi is being challenged by the other three ideologies.

The first ideological challenger is political Islam. This ideology wants adherents of the Islamic religion to play a greater role in public life or tends to promote the idea of applying syariah [Islamic] law. The concept of political Islam believes that Indonesia’s current ideology is too secular or liberal.

“[The most] prominent [groups] in this ideology are the FPI [the hard-line Islamic Defenders Front], the HTI [the banned fundamentalist Hizbut Tahir Indonesia]. These two ormas [mass or social organisations] played a significant role in the 2019 pilpres, coming behind Prabowo”, explained Denny.

Next is the ideology of “returning to the original UUD 1945”. This ideology holds to the idea that the current situation has given too much latitude to foreigners to interfere in Indonesia’s affairs, including the economy.

According to Denny, the Retired Army Generals Association (PPAD) has become the pioneer of this ideology. Figures such as PPAD chairperson retired Lieutenant General Suryadi and former Armed Forces chief Djoko Santoso are leaders of this grouping.

“In the 2019 pilpres, figures calling for a return to the original UUD 45, like Djoko Santoso, were also in the Prabowo camp”, he added.

Finally there is the ideology of human rights. This ideology is critical of the Widodo administration which it considers to be not liberal enough. This is opposite of the ideology of political Islam.

Widodo is also considered to have failed to resolve existing and past human rights violations and the majority of the pioneers of this ideology from non-government organisations (LSM).

“In 2019, one of their figures chose to be absent. [Lokataru Foundation Human Rights and Law Director] Haris Azhar for example, he strongly criticised Jokowi. But he also did not want to defend Prabowo who he believes has a dark record on human rights”, said Denny.

Denny said that the contestation between these four ideologies will continue in Indonesia because there will always be a different understanding about Indonesia’s dreams of the future and the understanding of matter pertaining to the state.

According to Denny, this four-way contestation will only disappear if one of these ideologies suffers a significant drop in followers. (ani/osc)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Denny JA Prediksi Pilpres 2024 Ramai Pertarungan 4 Ideologi”.]