07/08/2009, 00.00
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Yudhoyono leading in presidential vote, Megawati not giving up yet

by Mathias Hariyadi
Exit polls put outgoing president in the lead with 60.13 per cent of the vote. In his first reaction Yudhoyono thanks voters for going out to vote but he will not make any claim until final results are in. Former President Megawati slams excessive media euphoria, saying it is a bad example for democracy. She also alleges irregularities in the poll.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) – Early projections indicate that outgoing Indonesia President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono is heading for a landslide victory with 60.13 per cent of the vote. The two other candidates, Megawati Setiawati Soekarnoputri and Jusuf Kalla, follow far behind at 27.38 per cent and 12.50 per cent respectively. No major incident was reported during the vote but candidates reacted differently to early results.

In his first comment following the release of exit poll results President Yudhoyono warmly thanked his fellow Indonesians for going out to vote.

Speaking to aides and hundreds of supporters at his private residence he said results were the outcome of their hard work during the campaign.

Still Yudhoyono did try to dampen expectations since the “final tally was not yet in.”

“Let us wait and see,” he said, because the “Indonesian Election Commission (KPU) has the authority to declare who will be the winner”.

For his part Jusuf Kalla said he accepted the projections, but would wait for the Election Commission to announce the official results. 

Conversely, Megawati Setiawati Soekarnoputri slammed the media for creating an atmosphere of euphoria in the country by focusing on Yudhoyono’s lead.  At present “no one has the right to claim victory.”

Likewise TV elections coverage was “fake democracy,” she said, especially since irregularities were reported in the voting process, involving unregistered voters unable to cast their ballots.

Even so the authorities have not reported any serious violence during the election.

Some reports about incidents in the eastern province of Papua have come out. In Tembagapura (Mimika Regency), a guard post and a shuttle either case.

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