JAKARTA: Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on Tuesday (Apr 12) that the “initial phase” of the 2024 elections will begin on Jun 14, as he inaugurated members of the election commission responsible for the polls.
In a televised speech, the Indonesian leader who is popularly known as Jokowi said that he hopes the General Election Commission (KPU) and Election Supervisory Board (Bawaslu) can work immediately with parliament and the government to prepare for the presidential election and local elections simultaneously in 2024.
He said that the initial phase for the 2024 elections will begin on Jun 14 this year, although he did not elaborate what the initial phase of the elections would entail.
“This is important because for the first time, we will hold legislative, presidential and regional elections in the same year, so the KPU and Bawaslu must immediately prepare everything in detail and properly to maintain the quality of democracy,” Mr Widodo said.
“I entrust the KPU to also focus on giving political education to the public. Don't let people be provoked by issues of identity politics,” he added.
Indonesia is set to hold three key elections: parliamentary, gubernatorial and presidential elections in the same year in 2024, the first time in the country’s history.
There has been some speculation that Mr Widodo may intend to stay in office beyond his legally mandated two terms which expire in 2024.
This could be achieved via a constitutional amendment or an election delay, according to media reports.
However, the Indonesian leader had stated in the past that he would abide by the constitution on the presidential term limit.
Last week, he reportedly ordered ministers to cease making calls for an extension or postponement of the presidential election.
On Monday, Indonesian police fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse hundreds of university students protesting against high cooking oil prices and over the speculation of a mooted extension of Mr Widodo’s stay in office.