Many did not expect that Golkar Party presidential hopeful Aburizal Bakrie, whose party came second in the legislative election, would fail in his efforts to secure a presidential ticket so he could compete with Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Prabowo Subianto in the July presidential election.
The failure of Aburizal not only underlines the importance of a high approval rating, which eludes him, but also reveals the chronic problems of Indonesia’s political party system, namely party financing and cartelization. There are two characteristics of post-Soeharto political parties in Indonesia (Mietzner, 2013).
The first is established grassroots parties with strong historical and ideological bases, such as the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P), Golkar, the United Development Party (PPP), the National Awakening Party (PKB), the National Mandate Party (PAN) and the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS).
The roots of the PDI-P can be traced back to the Indonesian National Party (PNI), founded by Sukarno in 1927. Continue reading “Lessons from Aburizal’s failed presidential bid”