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Indonesia: Ruling party backs Widodo for next president

Indonesia: Ruling party backs Widodo for next president
Polls show high electability for current Indonesian president

By Erric Permana and Chandni Vasandani

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) - Indonesia's ruling party on Friday declared incumbent President Joko Widodo as candidate for the 2019 elections.

The announcement by Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) comes less than six months before the national poll opens registration for next year's elections.

Pramono Anung, PDI-P member and cabinet secretary, confirmed the news on Twitter following a closed-door meeting of party executives in Denpasar, Bali.

“We have decided to support @jokowi presidential candidacy for the 2019-2024 term,” Anung tweeted along with a photo of Widodo with party chairman Megawati Soekarnoputri.

Previously, four other parties -- Golkar, Nasdem, National Awakening Party and United Development Party -- also backed Widodo’s re-election bid.

Polls by Indonesian think tanks indicate high chances that Widodo will be reelected.

Recent surveys conducted by Indonesian think-tanks indicate a high electability for Widodo, compared to other hopefuls. Reports by the Indonesian Survey Institute (LSI) and Saiful Mujani Research show a high possibility of Widodo sitting for a second term in office, with figures for opposition leader Prabowo Subianto of Gerindra party tailing close.

PDI-P's decision came amid speculation over who will be appointed running mate for Widodo.

Vice President Jusuf Kalla may be potentially barred from running again as he turns 76 in May.

source: News Feed
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