Tuesday, April 16, 2024 | 14:31 WIB

Prabowo-Gibran National Campaign Team Aiming for a one-round victory


Jakarta, IO – The popular discourse of the day is the likelihood of the Prabowo-Gibran ticket winning the presidential race in just one round, a narrative constantly echoed by the Prabowo-Gibran national election committee, coalition members and various volunteer organizations supporting the No 2 candidate pair. 

Most recently, Kaesang Pangarep, chairman of the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) also joined the fray. When attending a consolidation meeting with Prabowo-Gibran volunteer groups in Tangerang, he said: “I call on all of you to vote for Gibran, so we can win in just one round. For you who voted for Jokowi before, let’s now vote for PSI,” said Kaesang, Tuesday (2/1). 

According to Prabowo-Gibran campaign spokesperson Hasan Nasbi, even with a three-horse race it is possible for one of them to win a presidential election in just one round, scheduled to be held on February 14, 2024. Moreover, all three of them claim that they are able to achieve a single-round victory. 

However, according to Hasan, based on the results of the surveys, the pair with highest chance to garner an absolute majority of votes (50%+1) is Prabowo-Gibran. 

“If we are talking about opportunity, in my opinion there is an 85 to 90 percent chance that Prabowo-Gibran will win in just one round,” said Hasan, Tuesday (19/12).

Single round for the common good 

From various discussions in formal and informal forums, the author found two main reasons why the single-round narrative has made the rounds for quite some time — economic and political stability. 

From an economic perspective, holding an election is very costly. Thus, if the 2024 presidential election can be concluded without heading to a runoff, it will save the state a budget of Rp17 trillion, a staggering amount that can be put to better use, such as funding the welfare programs (subsidies for fertilizer, public housing, green energy transition, direct cash assistance, or being reallocated to next year’s budget). 

If the winner is known in February, it will also reduce uncertainty, because the policymakers, business community and the general public do not need to wait until June (runoff round). Economic activities can kick back into high gear and investment plans can be decided and implemented sooner. 

As a defense and security observer, I am more concerned about the second reason — political stability. In my opinion, it is more complex, because it is closely linked to security and social order. 

We should be grateful because this time there are three contenders, unlike the previous two presidential elections where head-to-head ‘clashes’ led to a polarized society. However, things will certainly change if the winner should be decided in a runoff. 

I think the extreme polarization that occurred in the 2017 gobernatorial election in Jakarta and the 2019 presidential election has become a universal political contemplation. Many political elites have stated that they are against such polarization and want to prevent it from happening again. 

Even in mature democratic nations like in the US, the current discourse revolves around polarization and the long-term impact of polarized politics to the health of democracy in the country. 


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