Protesters pray during a rally against Jakarta Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama inside Istiqlal Mosque in Jakarta on Feb. 11, 2017. (Reuters Photo/Beawiharta)

Jakarta Voters Not Easily Intimidated: Istiqlal Mosque's Imam

APRIL 19, 2017

Jakarta. The imam of Jakarta's Istiqlal Mosque, Nasarudin Umar, said he is against the plan of sending people from outside Jakarta into the capital to help monitor the gubernatorial election runoff on Wednesday (19/04) — a plan concocted by some anti-Ahok groups.

"Jakarta residents are strong-minded. It won't be easy to change their mind. Save your energy and don't bother coming," Nasarudin said on Tuesday.

He added that unnecessary mass gatherings on election day could create chaos and anarchy in the capital.

"Let Jakarta residents cast their vote in peace," the imam said.

The police have banned mass gatherings planned for election day to prevent intimidation of voters.

Current Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama will face off against former education minister Anies Baswedan in the runoff election after neither of them managed to secure more than 50 percent of the total votes in the first round election on Feb. 15.