Indonesia: Gerindra set to join Jokowi coalition amid simmering internal tensions

  • Having led the opposition camp for the past five years, Prabowo Subianto’s Gerindra Party seems all but set to join President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s government coalition even as tensions within the camp emerge ahead of Jokowi’s inauguration on 20 Oct 19.
  • Prabowo has been on a marathon of meetings in the past few days in what experts say are efforts to seek the blessings of pro-government parties.
  • Jokowi appears to be at odds with his own Indonesia Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) regarding issues such as the recently revised Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Law and the plans for a constitutional amendment.
  • Meanwhile, relations between Surya and PDI-P chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri have seemingly soured since the election results were officially declared in Jun 19.
  • Adding to the mix are the National Mandate Party and the Democratic Party — both previously supporting Prabowo in Apr 19’s elections — that are also eyeing to join the coalition.
  • On 13 Oct 19, Prabowo visited Surya’s house in Permata Hijau, South Jakarta in what party officials described as a “silaturahmi” (friendly visit).
  • Both Prabowo and Surya denied they had discussed the possibility of Gerindra joining the coalition but said they had found “common ground.”
  • Surya echoed Prabowo’s statement. “Prabowo and I are one,” he said. “We want our continuing friendship to be a great foundation to build this nationhood.”
  • While both Jokowi and the PDI-P have expressed their openness to Gerindra joining the government, NasDem has been vocally opposed to additions to the ruling coalition.

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