Aburizal Bakrie Says He’s Still Searching for Suitable VP Candidate
Markus Junianto Sihaloho
Golkar Chairman Aburizal Bakrie says he is still searching for the right vice presidential candidate to run for the 2014 election, but he knows what kind of politician his running mate should be.
That running mate must be a popular figure with the capability and the ability to cooperate in running the government, Aburizal said on the sidelines of Golkar’s 48th anniversary celebration in Jakarta on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Priyo Budi Santoso, chairman of Golkar’s central executive board, said that the party has not made any decision yet on Aburizal’s running mate, “even when Golkar holds a leadership meeting in the near future.”
“But personally I want a Javanese to run with Bakrie, who is not a Javanese,” Priyo said.
“My calculation is that we will make a decision on this toward the end of 2013.”
He added that potential candidates might include first lady Ani Yudhoyono and governor of Yogyakarta Sultan Hamengkubuwono X.
Outside of the Golkar circle, however, other potential candidates are drawing bigger support with their rising popularity and public approval. The Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) is likely to send its chairwoman, Megawati Sukarnoputri, to block Aburizal’s presidential ambitions.
Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra) chairman Prabowo Subianto will also pose a serious challenge for Aburizal.
The possibility of independent candidates joining the race could also become a hurdle unless Aburizal proves to be a better candidate with the highest level of approval in voters’ perception, analysts said.