Basuki Tjahaja Purnama Officially Released from Jail on Thursday (01/24) morning - Photo: Privacy

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – After undergoing a two-year tenure in jail, today (01/24) morning, the former Governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (52 years), was officially released. His release received tremendous response from his supporters throughout Indonesia.

After leaving the prison, he was picked up by his eldest son Nicholas Sean and a representative from the BTP‘ team, and went straight to his residence in Pluit, North Jakarta.

The name BTP is new call to him as suggested from his supporters in a letter dated Jan. 17, instead of Ahok.

As we know, he was sentenced to prison after he was convicted of blasphemy in his campaign in the Seribu Island, North Jakarta on Sept. 27, 2016. In the May 2017, court ruling considered he violated Article 156a letter a of the Criminal Code, namely deliberately publicly issued feelings or committed acts of hostility, abuse, or desecration of a religion.

The verdict is more severe than the prosecutor’s demands, a one-year prison sentence with a two-year probation period. During his term of detention, he obtained a remission for three months and 15 days.

After the liberation, the public wondered where the next BTP step would be. Is he involved again in politics, or chooses to be concerned about building business and networks outside politics.

BTP himself does not provide certainty about the next steps. But he once wrote a letter asking his supporters, not to abstain from the general elections on ​​April, 17. His supporters were disappointed and intended to abstain when Joko Widodo decided partnerinq with Ma’ruf Amin in the 2019 Presidential Election. This was related to Amin’ role in the blasphemy case of BTP.

In October 2016, the pair of Widodo issued a fatwa of the Indonesian Cleric Council, which stated BTP’ words had insulted the Al’Quran and the cleric. This Fatwa was then used as a basis for suing BTP for blasphemy cases.

With his release, many of his supporters were waiting for his official statement about the 2019 presidential election, especially about the direction of support for presidential and vice-presidential candidate Widodo-Amin.

This was recognized because until now BTP still had a very loyal support base. The name BTP even often appears in surveys with open questions raised by several institutions.

Although the BTP message is important regarding the Presidential Election this time, but in fact most BTP loyalists have been determined to choose Jokowi because the Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno camp are often not in line with BTP’ principles.

Regarding where his political direction is after liberation, his best friend, who is a former deputy governor of DKI Jakarta Saiful Djarot, said that if wanted to engage in politics, he would join to the Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan Party, as reflected in the letter he wrote.

Written by Daniel Deha, Email: theinsiderstories@gmail.com