Surprise result in Jakarta Governor's election: what does it mean for local and national politics in Indonesia?

Crawford School of Public Policy | Arndt-Corden Department of Economics | Indonesia Project

Event details

Indonesia Study Group

Date & time

Wednesday 08 August 2012


Seminar Room B, Coombs Building, Fellows Road, ANU


Stephen Sherlock (Director, Centre for Democratic Institutions (CDI), Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU)


Indonesia Project
+61 2 6125 3794
The provincial governor’s election (Pemilukada) for the Special Region of Jakarta (DKI) on 11 July produced a surprising result that contradicted every poll and survey conducted in the weeks before polling day. Notwithstanding predictions that incumbent Governor, Fauzi Bowo, would be comfortably re-elected, he was defeated by the candidate who is the current Mayor of Solo, Joko Widodo (usually known as ‘JokowiŸ?). Jokowi received 41% of the vote to Fauzi’s 37%. Because neither candidate achieved an absolute majority, there will be a second round election on 22 September.

This paper will examine the process and the outcome of the 11 July first-round election. It will discuss the highly-publicised problems with the administration of the election, especially alleged massive inaccuracies in the voters list and disenfranchisement of voters, and examine their implications for future electoral processes in Indonesia. The paper will look at the background of all six candidate pairs who contested the election, including relations with the political parties who backed them. It will pose a series of questions about what the results might mean for local and national politics, including: Are problems with election administration undermining the political process and providing openings for manipulation? What is the role and influence of parties in regional elections? What developments are occurring in the kind of candidates and the style of campaigns that are succeeding in Pemilukada? What are the implications for the positioning of candidates for the 2014 presidential elections?

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