Morning Briefing: Opposition Starts to Break Ranks

Demokrat Party's Chairman Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (L) with Gerindra Party's Chairman Prabowo Subianto in press conference on Tuesday (24/07) - Photo by TheinsiderStories

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Good Morning. Disagreements among the opposition camp grew and the recently joined Demokrat Party may soon opt out of the already fragile political alliance.

It all started when former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono or SBY announced that his party will stand with the opposition in the next presidential election.

The opposition’s presumed Presidential candidate is former military man Prabowo Subianto, the founder of the Gerindra Party which is the main party in the opposition. Democrat won 10.2 per cent of the vote in 2014.

The trade off is for Subianto to run nominate SBY’s son and heir-apparent Agus Harimurti Yudhoyono (AHY) as running mate. Such possibility already creates dissent among the most opposition camp, most notably from the Keadilan Sejahtera Party, which is one of Subianto’s main ally and seek the Vice Presidential seat.

But, what had really happened is the opposite. Subianto is said to favor other candidate despite having been close to reach a deal to nominate AHY. Now, the one that threatens to break ranks is the Demokrat Party.

A high-ranking Demokrat Party official labeled Subianto as ‘card-box general’ and accused him of making a decision based on money. Subianto’s nominee is said to be Sandiaga Uno, a rich businessman who recently won the Jakarta deputy governor seat as Anies Baswedan’s running mate.

The ruling coalition is relatively settled. Backed by strong Popularity, President Joko Widodo may enjoy a bit of independence in choosing his number two. Former Constitutional Court chief judge Mahfud MD is said to be the favorite.

Mahfud’s strong religious and moderate identity could court a sizeable chunk of Muslim voters. Another candidate is Vice President Jusuf Kalla, who is currently waiting for a Constitutional Court verdict on whether he can run for the third time.

Turning to the market, investors’ biggest concern remains trade war, which is escalating. China just announced that it will impose 25 percent tariff on United State imports worth US$16 billion to retaliate similar decision by the country.

Foreign investors pulled out Rp483.5 billion worth of equity today, though the Jakarta Composite Index gained 0.06 percent to end at 6,094.83. The Rupiah strengthened to 14,439 per US$ from 14,485 per US$.

TIS Intelligence Team, Email: