Indonesia prepares for massive election day
April 16, 2019 | 12:41 PM
by Agencies
Indonesia is preparing for general elections. Photo supplied

Jakarta: Indonesia is preparing for general elections tomorrow that will see the world's third largest democracy choose its next leader and new members of parliament.

The country's General Election Commission (KPU) has said that over 190 million eligible voters have registered to vote in 524 regencies and municipalities across the archipelago. Presidential, parliamentary and regional elections will all take place on a single day, where voters will have a chance to choose from 245,000 candidates competing for more than 20,000 seats.

Voters will also be selecting their next head of state, a battle that will once again pit incumbent President Joko Widodo against arch-rival and opposition leader Prabowo Subianto.

This year’s presidential contest is a rematch of the 2014 elections which saw Subianto, a former general, run against and lose to Widodo, who at the time was Governor of Jakarta.

This year, Widodo has selected an Islamic scholar to be his running mate, choosing the influential cleric Ma’aruf Amin.

Prabowo on the other hand has chosen to run alongside the youthful businessman and former deputy governor of Jakarta Sandiaga Uno.

Elections in Indonesia this year are expected to be one of the most hotly contested in the nation’s history.

"The situation has led to polarization between two camps that leads to potential conflict," said intelligence and security expert Stanislaus Riyanta.

Indonesian nationals living overseas have already cast their ballots. The KPU has conducted the polling process in 130 cities across the world for over two million voters since 8 April.

"Vote counting for elections held in foreign countries will be conducted simultaneously with that of in Indonesia on 17 April," KPU Commissioner Hasyim Asy'ari said last week.

President Widodo is expected to win a second term in office. Surveys conducted by polling agencies have shown the incumbent winning over 50 percent of the vote.

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