Subject: TAPOL Press Release: Indonesian Elections 2009: The Contenders

TAPOL (UK) Promoting peace, human rights and democracy in Indonesia

Press Release

November 26, 2008

Indonesian Elections 2009: The Contenders

26 November 2008 Just ten years after Indonesia emerged from what was in effect a one-party system, no fewer than 38 political parties will contest the parliamentary elections next April.

A dozen or so parties are likely to win a significant number of seats with the ruling party of the Suharto regime, GOLKAR, Megawati Sukarnoputri's PDI-P and President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's Democratic Party expected to lead the way.

SBY, as he is popularly known, is ahead in polls on the popularity of Presidential candidates.

A detailed analysis of the political parties and their leading players is provided in 'The Multi-Choice Elections' published today online by TAPOL in its latest Election Update (see

The contending parties are broadly divided into those with secular and religious backgrounds. Significantly, a number of new parties run by former generals have emerged in the past couple of years, as retired officers attempt to compensate for their loss of political and economic clout.

Following the parliamentary elections in April, the first round of the Presidential elections will take place in July. A party or coalition of parties requires a threshold of 20 percent of parliamentary seats or 25 percent of the popular vote to be able to nominate a presidential candidate.

The latest news on the elections is available from TAPOL's fortnightly news digests at 

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