PDI-P Confirms Prabowo's Request for Gibran as Running Mate
Jakarta. A senior member of the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) confirmed on Saturday that presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto had previously approached Gibran Rakabuming Raka, the oldest son of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, to become his running mate.
Gibran, currently serving as the mayor of Solo in Central Java, informed the PDI-P about Prabowo's request.
"Gibran has discussed this matter with us in multiple dialogues," PDI-P Secretary-General Hasto Kristiyanto told reporters during the party's national meeting held at the Jakarta International Expo.
However, Hasto refrained from commenting on the party's official stance regarding the potential partnership between Prabowo and Gibran for the upcoming presidential election.
While the PDI-P has nominated former Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo for the presidency, no running mate has been designated as of yet.
Gibran won’t be able to meet the minimum age for a vice presidential candidate of 35 years old by the time the election is held on February 14.
Speculation surrounding Gibran's candidacy arose earlier this year when a group of politicians filed a motion with the Constitutional Court to lower the minimum age requirement.
Both Gibran and his father are members of the PDI-P and have secured their respective political positions with the party's support. However, in a recent development, Jokowi's youngest son, Kaesang Pangarep, joined the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) and was swiftly appointed as its chairman.
The possibility of Gibran aligning with a rival coalition supporting Prabowo's presidential bid may indicate a distancing of the president's family from the PDI-P, which maintains a centralized leadership structure under Chairwoman Megawati Soekarnoputri.
Earlier in the day, Megawati's daughter, Puan Maharani, expressed her lack of surprise at Gibran being considered a potential vice presidential candidate.
"That young man has demonstrated accomplishments in Solo and deserves consideration as a potential candidate," she said. But Puan emphasized the importance of not differentiating between age, gender, and background, stressing that all citizens have an equal right to participate in elections.