Singapore leaders congratulate Indonesia's Joko Widodo on election victory

Indonesian president Joko Widodo reacts after making a public address at a rural area of Jakarta, Indonesia, on May 21, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - President Halimah Yacob and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have written letters to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to congratulate him on his re-election win in last month's election.

Indonesia's election commission (KPU) on Tuesday released its official count of the April 17 vote, which showed that Mr Joko had won the presidential election with 55.5 per cent of the public vote against his challenger, former army general Prabowo Subianto, who secured 44.5 per cent.

In a letter released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday (May 21), Madam Halimah said Mr Joko's convincing victory was testament to the trust and confidence that the Indonesian people had in his leadership.

She said: "I am certain that you will build on the strong foundations of your first term to create a better future for all Indonesians."

She added that Singapore and Indonesia have excellent relations that were built on mutual respect and cooperation, with people-to-people ties that are deep and growing.

"I am confident that the ties between our two countries will continue to strengthen in the years ahead," she said, as she wished him success in his second term in office.

Congratulating Mr Joko on his victory, Mr Lee said: "The strong mandate you received reflects the trust that Indonesians have demonstrated in your continued leadership, and your vision to uplift the lives of all Indonesians."

He added that Singapore and Indonesia had made significant progress during Mr Joko's first term, including jointly launching the Kendal Industrial Park in 2016, and commemorating 50 years of bilateral relations in 2017.

He said both countries have cooperated closely in many areas, including trade and investment, the digital economy, skills upgrading, tourism, and defence and security, while bilateral relations were in excellent shape.

Mr Lee said he looked forward to working closely with Mr Joko to build on what both countries have achieved, and to explore new opportunities for cooperation.

He added that he hoped to meet Mr Joko at the Asean summit in Bangkok next month.

Mr Lee said he and his wife Ho Ching also wished Mr Joko and his wife Iriana good health and success.

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