The 60-day general election campaign in Indonesia ended on Saturday (June 26). Further campaigning is?
The 60-day general election campaign in Indonesia ended on Saturday (June 26). Further campaigning is now banned until the voting next Saturday (July 3). The campaigning between the 10 political parties, including the Government bloc, has been noisy and prolonged - but relatively peaceful. There was little trouble, and few arrests were made as politicians by the hundred campaigned for support in Indonesia's first general elections for 16 years.
SYNOPSIS: The 60-day general election campaign in Indonesia ended on Saturday, with party workers making a final bid to win the support of the electorate. Further campaigning is now banned until next Saturday, when voting begins.
The prolonged campaign, in the first general election for 16 years, was loud and colourful but relatively peaceful. The Moslem party -- which conducted a speedy campaign from motor-cycles -- is one of the ten political parties trying to get into power. But the number of parties is liable to drop sharply if the present Government, led by General Suharto, is returned to power. For the Government has accused the parties of contributing little to the country, and has threatened to axe most of them. But press reports say the Moslem party is one of the few safe ones. The Government, meanwhile needs just under one third of the votes to give it an effective majority under the Indonesian system of government.
One of the parties likely to be officially disapproved if the Government is returned is the West Irian Freedom Movement, which brought youth leaders into its campaign in a bid to get the support of the younger electorate. And the Government, half-way through a popular five-year development plan, is likely to be re-elected, according to press reports.
Apart from the Moslems, the only other party likely to survive losing the election is the Indonesian National Party, which attracted its share of the crowds in Saturday's last-minute bid for votes. (PAUSE FIVE SECONDS). The ruling party bloc, meanwhile, plans a week-long wee -- which, it says, will not violate the rules against campaigning.