Jakarta: The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) has called on the people to cast their votes in the general elections scheduled to be held on April 17.
"We should use the legislative election and presidential election as a medium to show our maturity, and to think with common sense," the council's Head of International Relations Muhyidin Junaidi said in Jakarta on Monday.
He called on people to maintain unity and not be divided because of different political choices.
People should behave maturely to recognize the results of the election. "Do not use the legislative and presidential elections as a medium to divide people. Differences in choices are inevitable, but this should not divide the nation."
"The Indonesian Ulema Council will pray for smooth and peaceful elections, Insya Allah (God willing)," he said.
Muhyidin reiterated that people should not abstain from voting, as it is not allowed in Islam.
Indonesia will hold its first ever simultaneous general and presidential elections on April 17. Voters will elect the president, vice president as well as members of national and local legislative bodies on the same day.
According to the official data, as many as 192 million people will be eligible to vote this year. In addition to that, around 800 thousand polling stations will be opened on the voting day.
In the 2009 general elections, the participation rate stood at 71 percent. Five years later, the participation rate rose to 74 percent.
A recent survey from Roy Morgan shows incumbent President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo is set for a comfortable re-election in April’s Presidential Election. This Morgan Poll on Indonesian Presidential and Parliamentary voting intention was conducted in January 2019 with an Indonesian-wide cross-section of 1,039 electors aged 17 or more and in December 2018 with an Indonesian-wide cross-section of 1,045 electors aged 17 or more.
According to the survey, the incumbent had the support of 58% of electors in January. It was up by 5% from the 2014 Indonesian Presidential Election.
On the other hand, opposition leader Prabowo Subianto had the support of 42% of electors in January. It was down 5% from the previous presidential election. (Antara)