Jakarta. An electoral watchdog warned that Banten's political dynasty has made it impossible for clean, honest and fair regional elections to take place in the province.
With former governor Ratu Atut Chosiyah's first son running as deputy governor in 2017, the family is likely to flex its muscle in the province's bureaucracy to spoil the chances of the other candidates.
"This political dynasty is capable of mobilizing the bureaucracy. A democratic election is simply impossible if the family takes over the system," coordinator of the People's Voter Education Network (JPPR) Masykurudin Hafidz said on Tuesday (23/08).
According to Masykurudin, there is also concern that Ratu Atut and her family will easily outdo all the other candidates in campaign funding.
"Donations are pouring into the family's coffers. The other candidates won't [be able to] compete," he said.
Masykurudin said some political dynasties in Indonesia have taken advantage of their position to siphon off money from regional funds — including aid budgets — to fund their political campaigns.
Ratu Atut's political dynasty has been notorious for dominating the political scene in Banten. Although she is no longer the governor, her family remains highly influential.
Another region infamous for its political dynasty is South Sumatra where the son of the governor Alex Noerdin, Dodi Reza Alex, plans to run for office as the Musi Banyuasin mayor.
Alex Noerdin, prior to his election as governor, was the mayor of the city.