The 2019 Indonesian elections, despite being an important and pivotal moment in the country’s history and politics, is also significant for other reasons. The 2019 elections are one of the biggest and most complex in the whole world.
What make them so complex?
Firstly, both the presidential election between Joko Widodo and Prabowo Subianto took place on the same day as parliamentary and regional elections – this is the first time in the country’s history.
Altogether, around the whole archipelago, for all the seats in all the regions, there are 245,000 candidates who put themselves forward. They fought for the available 20,500 seats at national and regional levels – 30% of which must be women. In total there are 20 parties for which candidates are representing.
Secondly, the sheer quantity of eligible voters is huge: 192,866,254 people!
Whilst certainly not all of them will be voting, and some may even be overseas, this is still a logistical challenge.
Add to that the decentralised nature of Indonesia’s lowest level of legislators, right down to the ‘RT’ neighbourhood areas where Jakartans often vote, this comes a total of 809,500 polling stations that were available.
And that’s still not all. Let’s remember that Indonesia is a country of 17,000 islands , whilst not all inhabited, the polling stations had to be spread out from West to East in some incredibly remote areas. With that Indonesia stretches out so far that it contains a total 3 timezones , meaning that above ‘space’, ‘time’ also is an added factor to the complications.
So, no matter the outcome of all of the elections, it can be agreed that the efforts to continue democracy in Indonesia is no easy feat, and the population must therefore be proud in the effort it takes to make sure that the people can have their say. Let’s hope the results are fair and just too.
Cheers to a healthily democratic Indonesia.