Jakarta. The House of Representatives accepted the nomination of Andika Perkasa as the new military chief during a plenary session on Monday, the same day when outgoing commander Hadi Tjahjanto reaches his retirement age.
Andika, who currently serves as the Army chief of staff, was announced as President Joko Widodo’s pick for the Indonesian Military (TNI)’s top post last week.
The House’s approval came after a two-day assessment by the Commission I overseeing defense and foreign affairs over the weekend, which included a visit to his residence in Jakarta.
Commission chairwoman Meutya Hafid told the plenary session that the nominee is qualified to become the TNI commander.
"Do you agree with Commission I’s recommendation on the honorable discharge of Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto and the approval of General Andika Perkasa’s nomination as the TNI chief?" House Speaker Puan Maharani asked to a chorus of approval from the floor.
Andika graduated from the Military Academy in 1987 and has since spent most of his career with the Army Special Forces or Kopassus.
He became known to the public after being appointed as a spokesman for the army in November 2013, which earned him a promotion to brigadier general.
Within 11 months, he entered the inner circle of the government as the president asked him to lead the presidential security service, or Paspampres, an equivalent of the US Secret Service. His appointment came just two days after Jokowi was sworn in as the new president in 2014.
That means he became a major general in less than a year after his last promotion.
The son-in-law of former State Intelligence Agency head Hendropriyono continued running through the ranks after being appointed as the head of the army’s education and training division.
Andika was appointed as the Army chief of staff in November 2018.