Monday, June 17, 2024 | 07:17 WIB

The people have chosen their leader Time to come together and build our nation



The plan by the losing candidate pairs to challenge the election results at the Constitutional Court (MK) over findings of alleged election fraud is nothing new and is a legitimate constitutional step. From GE2004 to GE2019, MK has received complaints over vote rigging allegations by the losing contenders. And in a positive note, all parties to the dispute were ultimately able and willing to accept MK decisions. This is a tradition that should always be preserved, including in this presidential election. 

The reason being the quality of a country’s democracy is largely determined by the quality of its elections. And the quality of the elections is largely determined by the extent to which the contestants are able to respect whatever the outcome is. The winner does not feel arrogant, and the loser is able to concede gracefully. Only with an attitude like this can democracy become “the only game in town”. Otherwise, democracy will suffer a setback due to unwillingness to admit defeat. 

Muhammad Tri Andika

Winning and losing is part of a competition, including in elections. The loser should be “legowo” (a Javanese word that means one should willingly accept whatever comes their way) and the winner should be reconciliatory. This noble attitude, thankfully, has been demonstrated by the winning Prabowo-Gibran pair, namely a commitment to embrace all elements and forces for the sake of national unity. In Prabowo’s words, that he will become “the President for all Indonesians.” 

In a victory speech on Wednesday (14/2) evening, Prabowo and Gibran also vowed to form a government that works for all tribes, ethnicities, societal groups and religions in Indonesia. Then he told his supporters not to be arrogant or celebrate the victory excessively. Prabowo even called on all parties who voted for other candidates to reunite as fellow countrymen. 

According to him, all the people he met in the regions he visited wanted a peaceful election, undergirded by a sense of brotherhood, not hostility and antagonism. He said that the quick count results which showed a clear one-round victory is worth celebrating but the supporters of Team No 2 must remain humble and wait for the official results from KPU. 

Prabowo-Gibran’s victory was also welcomed by many state leaders, among others, the Czech Republic, the United States, Singapore, Australia, the Netherlands, Malaysia, Russia, UK, China and India. In general, they recognized the legitimacy of Prabowo’s victory and are looking forward to building a stronger tie with Indonesia under his presidency.

Read: Suspected Of Being A Radical, Ustaz Syafiq Basalamah’s Gathering In East Java Dispersed

When the election results are finally announced by KPU, it is normal for the winner to be happy and satisfied with the fruits of hard work and struggle, from months of campaigning. However, this euphoria should not be expressed excessively. There is no need to become condescending, or worse, bullying the losers. The victory should be celebrated in a constrained and elegant manner. 

On the other hand, it is normal for the losers to feel sad, disappointed or even angry. Of course, it is painful to when a reality that does not match one’s expectations. To ensure that one does not get bogged down by these negative emotions for too long, they should be able to deal with the agony of defeat by moving on and looking toward the future. After all, elections are just a process to achieve the nation’s greater goals. Therefore, there is no need to respond emotionally to the results, let alone making the society become divided. 

The victory of Prabowo-Gibran is the will of the people; therefore, it is also the victory of all Indonesians. The festival of democracy is over; now is the time to join hands to build a more developed and prosperous Indonesia. (Muhammad Tri Andika)


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