Marzuki Plays It Cool on Democratic Party Convention

By Markus Junianto Sihaloho on 04:18 pm Jul 06, 2013
Category News, Politics

House of Representatives Speaker Marzuki Ali says he will not fight hard to get the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination at an upcoming convention.

Instead, Marzuki on Friday said he would “just let it flow and let things take their own course” at the convention.

Marzuki, the Democrats’ deputy chief of advisors, initially appeared keen to participate in the convention, but seemed to back down when former Army chief of staff Pramono Edhie Wibowo joined the party last week and was appointed as an advisor. The party is encouraging Pramono to take part in the convention.

Marzuki declined to comment on his competitors in the convention, which include Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan, former Constitutional Court chief justice Mahfud M.D., State Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan and Regional Representatives Council (DPD) speaker Irman Gusman.

Previously Democratic Party politician Ruhut Sitompul said Marzuki was persistent and many of his words had hidden meanings.

Ruhut said he would support Pramono as the party’s presidential candidate, claiming that Pramono’s words were clearer.

Marzuki said he did not consider Pramono to be his rival in the convention.

“He’s not a rival, but he’s here to increase the number of figures in the Democratic Party,” Marzuki said.

Marzuki said that he has known Pramono, the son of former Army commander Sarwo Edhie Wibowo, since 2003, when Pramono was working for President Megawati Sukarnoputri.

In a survey last month, more than half of respondents said they were unhappy with President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s performance, adding to the evidence that the leader has lost his touch in the twilight of his decade in office.

A Indonesia Research Center survey found 57 percent of respondents were not satisfied with Yudhoyono’s presidency, and 72 percent of people did not believe that Yudhoyono could overcome the country’s problems. Pramono is the brother of Yudhoyono’s wife Ani. Markus Junianto Sihaloho