Jakarta. Indonesia's second biggest political party, Golkar, late on Wednesday (13/12) appointed Industry Minister Airlangga Hartarto as its new chairman, replacing Setya Novanto who is on trial on graft charges.
Airlangga was chosen by acclamation during Golkar's national plenary meeting, Suara Pembaruan reported.
The new chairman reaffirmed the party's allegiance to the government and support for President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's reelection bid next year.
"That is the  national leaders meeting's mandate and it cannot be changed," Airlangga said.
To decide the fate of his ministerial post after the party appointment, he said, is the prerogative of the president.
Under Airlangga's leadership, Golkar will have to find a replacement for Setya as the House of Representatives speaker.
"We will decide on it before the next session of the legislature," he said.
The House will meet again in early January.
Airlangga promised to cater to all Golkar members and called for unity among them.
"In unity, Golkar will rise and win. We will summon all [party members]," he said, adding that the party must be consolidated to face the 2018 regional polls and the 2019 legislative and presidential elections.