Indonesia votes: Hard fight for battleground state of South Sulawesi

Presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto from Gerindra party speaking on his first day of campaigning in Manado, North Sulawesi, on March 24. The seventh-biggest province by population, South Sulawesi, is a big electoral prize.
Presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto from Gerindra party speaking on his first day of campaigning in Manado, North Sulawesi, on March 24. The seventh-biggest province by population, South Sulawesi, is a big electoral prize.PHOTO: EPA-EFE
Incumbent President Joko Widodo and his wife Iriana (left) in a becak while campaigning in Makassar in South Sulawesi yesterday. Outgoing Vice-President Jusuf Kalla and his wife Mufidah are in the other pedicab.
Incumbent President Joko Widodo and his wife Iriana (left) in a becak while campaigning in Makassar in South Sulawesi yesterday. Outgoing Vice-President Jusuf Kalla and his wife Mufidah are in the other pedicab.PHOTO: TWITTER/@JOKOWI

Indonesia will hold its presidential and legislative elections on April 17. With more than 192 million people eligible to vote, it will be the largest polls since direct elections were first held 15 years ago. The Straits Times reports on how the campaign is unfolding in key election battlegrounds across the vast archipelagic nation. Today, we look at South Sulawesi province.

At the Azzahrah cafe in South Sulawesi's capital of Makassar, Mujaharin, 40, unwinds with a steady string of cigarettes punctuated with coffee served up with dollops of condensed milk.

Fresh off the night shift from the hospital where he works as a cashier, Mr Mujaharin, who uses one name, said his choice for president in 2014 was easy. He chose the incumbent, Mr Joko Widodo.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 01, 2019, with the headline 'Hard fight for battleground state of South Sulawesi'. Print Edition | Subscribe