In Djakarta on Thursday (23 March), President Suharto was sworn in at the People's Congress for his third five-year term as Indonesia's Head of State and government.
In Djakarta on Thursday (23 March), President Suharto was sworn in at the People's Congress for his third five-year term as Indonesia's Head of State and government. The country's supreme policy-making body had re-elected him unopposed and unanimously, at a plenary session on Wednesday (22 March). Shortly after the President had been sworn in, former Foreign Minister Adam Malik was elected Vice-President.
SYNOPSIS: The People's Congress is Indonesia's supreme policy-making body, and meets only once very five years.
President Suharto, now 56, came to power after crushing a 1965 communist coup attempt. After being sworn in he said he was deeply grateful to the Congress, and to the entire Indonesian nation, who had placed full confidence in him. He told them: "I am well aware that the duty entrusted upon me is extremely heavy." The swearing-in ceremony came at the time when hundreds of heavily armed troops were patrolling Djakarta, ready to shoot troublemakers on sight. The Military Command said on Tuesday (21 March), that an underground extremist group was trying to spread terror in Djakarta with petrol bombs and explosives. A few car burnings and other isolated incidents were reported, and 39 arrests made.
General Suharto was first sworn in as acting-President in March 1967. He became Indonesian Prime Minister in October the same year, and was elected President in March 1968. The 60-year-old Mr. Malik succeeds Sultan Hamengku Buwono as Vice-President. A veteran of Indonesia's struggle against Dutch colonial rule, Mr. Malik was Foreign Minister for 11 years.