A political manifesto of Prabowo Subianto: A strong & dignified Indonesia

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Asyari Usman
Senior Journalist

IO – It was brief and succinct: the vision of Prabowo Subianto (PS), as expressed last night (14/01/2019) is simply that “Indonesia is strong and dignified”. This vision would later evolve into “Indonesia Wins”, the title of Pak PS’ “political manifesto”. He made these points neatly and in order, in a confident style that matches his body language. There was no missing link, no omission. This proclamation aroused a great cheer, one that resounded through the Jakarta Convention Centre.

A clear and detailed explanation of his vision displays just how inclusive and comprehensive it is. For example, PS affirmed that if the people grant the mandate to Prabowo-Sandi, they would prioritize the lowest in society. The “Number 02” Presidential Candidate Pair will set their priority towards the fuqara and the dhuafa – the powerless and the weak. At the same time, PS also reiterated the importance to the nation of nurturing entrepreneurs and championing their enterprises. He did not deny their importance. However, he wants to ensure that these investors set aside a reserve in fairness for the fuqara and dhuafa. PS emphasized the need to assist small-time fishermen and farmers in their work, the need to set policies and take steps that will benefit the little people – without imposing losses on the business world.

Prabowo not only explained the correlation between economic investment and raising up the weak, but also touched on the religiosity absent from the Jokowi government in power over the past four years. This is ironic, because historically, Indonesia’s independence was fought for and sustained by warriors who prioritized their theology.

Prabowo is aware of this underestimation of religiosity. He promised to return the position of the ulema and the leaders of the other faiths to their proper maqam – their rightful place. He would honor them and appoint them as Government’s consultants. He would grant the ulema the freedom to sermonize. There is to be no persecuting them, no criminalizing them. In fact, the Government will provide a more comfortable space for religious activities within the common corridor created, according to the Pancasila and the Constitution of ‘45.

As President, Prabowo will guarantee and guard the rights of the minority. This is something that has never even been an issue, even before our Independence. Muslims as the majority have never taken issue with the presence of minorities, and there were never any horizontal conflicts with any minorities whatsoever. Problems occur when political criminals show up with agendas that assault Islam, which naturally disturbs the stability of the Muslims. This was what transpired in the past, and is being repeated in the Jokowi era.

As President, Prabowo Subianto will endeavor to smooth out such misunderstandings in the relationship between groups. Indonesian Muslims are in fact always ready to become a rahmatan lil alamin or blessing to the world as a majority, as Prabowo himself stated in the elaboration of his vision last night. Furthermore, he swore that he would champion the mass media as his source of critique. He would grant to them freedom to speak out and report according to the limits set by Pancasila and written regulations that they accept as the Press Law. There shall be no more persecutions and prosecutions of publisher of factual news and opposition writers.

There are so many other aspects included in Prabowo’s executive vision. You would need days of discussion simply to refine each goodness, improvement, and logical reason. I say that one would harbor no doubts about Prabowo’s vision, unless the intent of such an observer would be to prevent Indonesia from becoming strong, sovereign and honored in the hall of nations.

Alhamdulillah, praise be to Allah, this is the political manifesto that will shape Indonesia into a strong and dignified nation. It will shape Indonesia in a balance, a balance between modernity and simplicity. A balance between economic development and the strengthening of religiosity. A balance between fairly exploiting natural resources for our use and preserving the environment for our future. A balance between strong government and superior public monitoring. Today, the Indonesian people no longer reserve any doubts about Prabowo-Sandi’s capacity and capability. There is also no more doubt about the direction of the Government that they are about to lead. Prabowo is not antipathic towards foreign investment, nor towards fair exploitation of natural wealth – as long as these are made based on a joint agreement based on common sense and logic.

Above all, Prabowo-Sandi would not condone the ever-lurking socio-political polarization characterizing Jokowi’s rule in their application of Governmental authority. On the contrary, President Prabowo will nurture healing, in order to ameliorate the intense rivalry between Prabowo’s side and Jokowi’s side. In this way, all components of Indonesian society can perform their roles jointly in order to enjoy peaceful coexistence. Naturally, there will be legal knots that must be unraveled fairly. This is necessary to ensure that Prabowo’s presidency doubles as both a watershed and a foundation, in order to establish a sustainable socio-political environment, one where citizens fall victim to denigrating, insulting and hating one another.

Let us endeavor to support Prabowo-Sandi in entering the Presidential Palace together, through the 17 April 2019 Presidential Elections, and realize Indonesia’s victory together. Wallahu a’lam (“only Allah knows”).