Jakarta: Widodo one step away from second mandate, but Subianto claims victory
by Mathias Hariyadi

The eight most important poling companies attribute a range of votes between 54.32% and 55.77% to Widodo.  His rival, supported by the Islamists: "They are trying to make it look like we lost".  Fear of possible street unrest spreads among the population.  The armed forces promise "zero tolerance".

Jakarta (AsiaNews) - The pollsters accredited by the Indonesian Electoral Commission (Komisi Pemilihan Umum, Kpu) for the preliminary counting of the votes have no doubts: the current president, the moderate Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, is the winner of the general election with about  55% of the votes.  Widodo is inviting the parties to national unity and his supporters to "wait for the official results", which will be published no earlier than next month.  His rival, the former army general Prabowo Subianto, contradicts the data provided by analysts and claims he can count on "52.2% of preferences".

The son-in-law of the late dictator Haji Mohammad Suharto, Subianto does not specify the source of the information but states: "Some pollsters are trying to make it seem that we have lost."  Adding to his constituents, he adds: "Do not let yourself be provoked, continue to monitor the counting of votes".  Much of the Indonesian society has accepted Subianto's statements with skepticism.  The politician claimed victory in 2014, when he was defeated by Widodo himself.

The eight most important survey companies attribute a range of votes between 54.32% and 55.77% to Widodo with Subianto esteimated at between 44.23% and 45.68%.  Following Subianto's claims, the fear of possible street riots by Islamists has spread among the population, constituting its main reservoir of votes.  However, the Indonesian police released a statement in which it excludes this possibility.  The Armed Forces (Tni) have put in place extensive security measures and are actively defending the Kpu headquarters.

A few hours ago, the commander-in-chief of the TNI, air marshal Hadi Tjahjanto, stated in a press conference that military and police officers will implement a zero-tolerance policy towards any attempt at riot.  "We will never tolerate actions that intend to interrupt the democratic process, illegal activities, the clouding of the law and the social order.  The Nkri [the unitary Republic of Indonesia will never be compromised, "he said.