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Indonesia president rejects end to direct votes, relaxing term limit

Senin, 02 Desember 2019 / 20:38 WIB
Indonesia president rejects end to direct votes, relaxing term limit
ILUSTRASI. Presiden Joko Widodo

Sumber: Reuters | Editor: Herlina Kartika Dewi

KONTAN.CO.ID - JAKARTA. Indonesian President Joko Widodo rejected on Monday proposals by some politicians and a Muslim group to amend the constitution to end direct elections for the presidency and relax term limits in the world's third-biggest democracy.

Widodo, who won a second five-year term in April, his last under current rules, said in a Twitter message his "position was clear in disagreeing with a three-term presidency".

Separately, he told reporters that discussions on the amendment had referred to plans for an eight-year, one-term presidency or three terms of up to 15 years in total. "It's better not to amend," he said.

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Indonesian activists have warned the proposals would mark a setback for democracy, restored after the 1998 overthrow of dictator Suharto, who had ruled for more than 30 years.

Some politicians, including from Widodo's own party, the Indonesian Democratic Party for Struggle (PDI-P), and coalition partners, have called for the reinstatement of a Suharto-era set of national development goals known as the Broad Guidelines of State Policy.

Under the Broad Guidelines, a People's Consultative Assembly, or MPR -- then stacked with army officials and Suharto supporters -- picked the president.

"I'm a product of the post-reform constitution," Widodo also said in his tweet. The former furniture salesman and small town mayor is the first Indonesian president from outside the country's political and military elite.