LENTERA ENGLISH — Indonesian Vice Presidential candidate Ma’ruf Amin denied rumors of being merely used as a “tool” by incumbent President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) for winning the Presidential Elections, due to be held on April 17, 2109. Ma’ruf chose to not specify those, who had spread the rumors, but he categorized them as ones intending to destabilize the current condition.
“It is said that Ma’ruf Amin is only used as a tool. Do you think that I am a ‘hoe’? What is used as a tool is a ‘hoe,’” he told attendees of the commemorative event of the Nahdlatul Ulama’s (NU’s) 93rd anniversary here on Thursday.
Denying the rumors, Ma’ruf emphasized the fact that he was a former Rais ‘Aam, or supreme leader, of the NU, Indonesia’s largest Muslim organization, and chairman of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI). The 76-year-old respected ulema affirmed that it was impossible for incumbent President Jokowi to use a kyai, or Islamic teacher, as a tool only for deriving benefits during the upcoming presidential race.
Ma’ruf also reiterated his readiness to be deployed as a means to enhance Indonesia’s development.
The commemorative event was attended by National Awakening Party (PKB) Chairman Muhaimin Iskandar as well as top local NU leaders, KH Abdul Qodir Rozi, and KH Khaerul Anam. During his visit to the West Java city of Cianjur, Amin also visited several Islamic boarding schools.
In connection with the 2019 Presidential Election, the General Election Commissions (KPU) has prepared five rounds of presidential debates for the pairs of Joko Widodo-Ma’ruf Amin and Prabowo Subianto-Sandiaga Uno. The presidential debates, broadcast live by several television channels, are expected to help some 192 million eligible voters, who will participate in this democratic process, to become well-informed on the two pairs’ capacity and capability.
Empowered with sufficient information about the candidates, they will be able to vote rationally. Whoever wins the upcoming presidential election, Indonesia will have a new pair of capable president and vice president.