Indonesia votes: Deputy governor Emil Dardak is no stranger to public service

East Java deputy governor Emil Dardak says the curiosity shown by young Indonesians about local politics in recent years is "a good sign".
East Java deputy governor Emil Dardak says the curiosity shown by young Indonesians about local politics in recent years is "a good sign".PHOTO: ALI MASDUKI

East Java is shaping up as a stronghold for President Joko Widodo in his bid for re-election at the April 17 polls in Indonesia. Helming the province are his former social affairs minister Khofifah Indar Parawansa and Golkar party rising star Emil Dardak. The newly sworn-in governor and her deputy speak to The Straits Times about what constituents can expect from their first term in office.

SURABAYA • Newly minted East Java deputy governor Emil Dardak may be among the youngest of those who succeeded in Indonesia's recent regional polls but he is no political rookie.

In just three years as regent of Trenggalek, the 34-year-old has improved its health services and access to remote areas, as well as turned the sleepy town into a tourist destination for those seeking to go off the beaten track.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 09, 2019, with the headline 'Deputy governor no stranger to public service'. Print Edition | Subscribe