Jakarta's new governor Baswedan sworn in
October 16 2017 02:59 PM
Jakarta
Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan (right) and his deputy Sandiaga Uno wave to reporters before a swearing-in at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Monday.

Reuters/Jakarta

Indonesian President Joko Widodo swore in a former education minister as Jakarta's governor on Monday, months after an election that opened up religious and ethnic divisions in the world's biggest Muslim-majority country.
Anies Baswedan was inaugurated as Indonesia's reputation for religious tolerance comes under scrutiny.
Baswedan faced criticism after winning April's vote with the support of Islamist groups who had agitated for months against his opponent and former governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama - an ethnic Chinese Christian - whom they accused of blasphemy against Islam.
"We will ensure that the governor of Jakarta will be the governor of us all, of those who voted for us and those who didn't," Baswedan told reporters, wearing a crisp white uniform after a ceremony in the Dutch colonial-style state palace.
Sandiaga Uno, Baswedan's deputy, has previously said the administration would consider setting up "sharia-inspired" or sharia-compliant entertainment spots similar to those in Abu Dhabi or Dubai.
Indonesia is officially secular and its constitution enshrines religious diversity, though the return to demoocray two decades ago after the end of the autocratic rule of Suharto has allowed hardline groups to flourish.
While religion was an important factor during the election, most Jakarta residents are also concerned with issues such as chronic traffic congestion and regular flooding.
"The hope is for Jakarta to move forward so it's cleaner and the poor receive help," said Wisnu, a 42-year-old courier.
Baswedan and Uno are backed by the main opposition party Gerindra, which has now wrenched control of the capital away from Widodo's ruling party.
The battle for the Jakarta governorship was widely seen as a proxy for the 2019 presidential election.
Baswedan's main backer is retired general and Gerindra chief Prabowo Subianto who is widely expected to run for president against Widodo in 2019.



There are no comments.

LEAVE A COMMENT Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*
MORE NEWS