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Yudhoyono, Habib Organization Call for National Unity After Prabowo's 'People's Power' Threat

Fana Suparman & Muhamad Al Azhari
April 19, 2019 | 8:58 pm
Prabowo Subianto talks to supporters outside his family home in Jalan Kertanegara in South Jakarta on Friday. (Antara Photo/Indrianto Eko Suwarso)
Prabowo Subianto talks to supporters outside his family home in Jalan Kertanegara in South Jakarta on Friday. (Antara Photo/Indrianto Eko Suwarso)

Jakarta. Presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto said in a speech during yet another victory declaration on Friday that people would take to the streets if his camp found that the quick-count results of the April 17 presidential election had been manipulated.

During a gathering in South Jakarta, the former Army general claimed for the fourth time in two days that he had won the 2019 presidential election, based on data compiled by his campaign team. The gathering was initially planned for the Istiqlal Mosque, the country's largest, in Central Jakarta, but later moved out of respect for Christians celebrating Good Friday, which is a public holiday in Indonesia. The mosque is across the road from the Jakarta Cathedral.

"If there are clear efforts to infringe on the people's rights, we won't accept it. We, all of us, will take action in accordance with the Constitution," Prabowo said during the "Gratitude for Victory in the 2019 Presidential Election" event at his family residence in Jalan Kertanegara.

In what appears to have been a subtle call on supporters to prepare for mass action, he said Indonesia's 1945 Constitution guarantees the right of all citizens to gather in the streets and express their opinions.

However, he called on supporters not to be provoked by narratives from those he claimed are planning to disrupt the national unity. "There is nothing wrong with us upholding justice. We want truth and justice!" he said.

Yudhoyono Raises Concern

Democratic Party chairman Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who is an influential ally of Prabowo, warned members of his party on Friday not to commit any unconstitutional acts. He also ordered those serving on Prabowo's campaign team to return to the party's headquarters to consolidate.

The former president is still in Singapore, where his wife is currently receiving medical treatment.

"Regarding the political situation after the election, which shows increasing tension and could lead to a dangerous political and security situation, I instruct all officials ... to continue monitoring closely what is happening in the motherland," Yudhoyono reportedly said.

'Habib Organization' Calls for Unity

Habib Zen bin Smith, chairman of Rabithah Alawiyah, an organization for habib, or Islamic scholars from the Sayyid community, who are descendants of the Prophet Muhammad, released a statement on Friday calling for national unity in Indonesia, the world's biggest Muslim-majority country.

"Whatever the results, we must maintain ukhuwah [a brotherly spirit]. Elections are important, but what is more important, is to maintain our unity as a nation," he said.

Meanwhile, in response to Prabowo's apparent call for mass action, Indonesian Military (TNI) chief Air Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto warned that the military would not tolerate any moves that may disturb the peace.

He said the military and police would maintain stability while the vote-counting process is underway.

He was speaking at a press conference attended by National Police chief Gen. Tito Karnavian and high-level military and police officials at the offices of Chief Security Minister Wiranto.

"The Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia is non-negotiable," Hadi said.

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