Most people seem to love him and political parties want him.

Adelia Anjani Putri   16 March 2017 12:15

West Java is holding an election next year and politicians have started to bid for a place in the competition. Bandung Mayor Ridwan Kamil is one of them.

He officially announced his intention to run for the gubernatorial post earlier this month and his statement has been welcomed with open hands by political parties.

Last year, Ridwan considered running for Jakarta Governor but finally decided not to as most residents of his city wanted him to finish his job there first. Ridwan was elected Bandung Mayor in 2013. The city will also hold an election next year, but Ridwan decided to take a step higher in the political ladder.

“My intention to run (in West Java election) cannot be avoided anymore. If there’s support for me, I would like to (run), if there isn’t well I won’t. So, I’m ready if there’s enough support from independent groups, the public and political party,” he said on Mar. 11 to reporters in Bandung.

“There’s an option to run as independent candidate, but it’s hard because the percentage of population we have to gain votes from is so big. It won’t be that easy,” he said, referring to his win in Bandung Election as an independent candidate.

So far, Ridwan has met with several major political parties but has yet to decide which one he’ll choose as his main supporters.

“Many has flirted with me, but none has actually proposed. I don’t have a party, so I will only run if there’s support. I have met with PKS (Prosperous Justice Party), Gerindra (Great Indonesia Movement), PAN (National Mandate Party), Nasdem (National Democrat Party), Hanura (People’s Conscience Party), The Democratic Party and PDIP (Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle),” he said on Monday.

“I don’t want to be over optimistic. Until there’s a written deal, there’s no certainty.”

Though there has yet to be an exact plan for his bid, Ridwan’s electability is soaring high.

According to a survey held by Indonesia Strategic Institute (Instrat) in January, his electability reached 35.1 percent, while sitting West Java Deputy Governor Deddy Mizwar only reached 17.4 percent and Purwakarta Regent Dedi Mulyadi  — who is rumored to be Golkar’s choice for the election — reached 10.9 percent. Former West Java Deputy Governor Dede Yusuf and another young mayor, Bima Arya of Bogor, didn’t even reached 10 percent.

However, Ridwan’s plan is not received well by everyone. Some of his constituents want him to remain as Bandung Mayor instead.

Several volunteers who supported Ridwan back in 2013 held a press conference yesterday to declare their objection to the mayor’s plan to run for the West Java Governor post. They wanted Ridwan to run for another term and finish what he’s started in the province’s capital.

“We believe that development should be continuous and Bandung’s big dreams wouldn’t be finished in just one period. Only he can finish (what he has started). So the best option is to continue (his tenure) in Bandung,” said Arfi Rafnialdi of Bandung Volunteers group yesterday to reporters.

“Our group has met with Kang Emil to hear his explanation regarding this issues. During the meeting, he said that now he’s still considering support from public figures, mass organizations and political party. But he hasn’t reached a final decision.”

The West Java election is scheduled for June 2018 and the candidate registration will start in January 2018.

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