Jakarta. Anies Baswedan delivered his last speech as Jakarta governor on Sunday but he told his supporters to continue standing behind him for the 2024 presidential election in which he has secured a nomination from the National Democratic Party (Nasdem).
Hundreds of supporters from various elements of the society were present in City Hall courtyard chanting support for Anies, a former university chancellor who first got involved in politics when he joined the campaign team of then-presidential candidate Joko “Jokowi” Widodo in the 2014 election.
"Today we conclude our job in Jakarta but we must prepare for the next job," Anies told his audience.
"Get ready to work and achieve our dream together. God willing, we will get through this together."
His supporters, who clearly outnumbered Jakarta city employees during the farewell event that turned into an early presidential campaign, kept chanting: “Anies for president!”
Anies said during his five-year tenure residents of the capital city have enjoyed a peaceful and secure environment, but quickly added that he had no intention to speak very highly and proudly about the Jakarta government’s achievements under his leadership.
He said his words aren’t necessary to describe achievements and positive changes his administration has brought to Jakarta.
People rushed onto the stage as he finished his speech to take selfies with the governor in the loosely guarded event.
Anies will be replaced by presidential appointee Heru Budi Hartono, a career bureaucrat and close aide of President Jokowi, until the gubernatorial election is held in 2024.
Considered a key campaigner during Jokowi’s successful run in the 2014 presidential election, Anies in a sense has been an opposing figure of the president since Jokowi dismissed him from the education minister post in 2016, only two years after in office.
During the 2017 Jakarta gubernatorial election, Anies won the head-to-head run against Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, a close friend of the president and a deputy when Jokowi was the Jakarta governor in 2012-14.
Anies received the backing from political parties who traditionally became the opponents of the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P).
Nasdem party has parted ways with the PDI-P by the time they announced Anies as their presidential candidate.