Indonesia votes: Voters in North Sumatra hope for president who can keep the peace

Businessman Sukiwi Tjong (left) says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso (right), citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, b
The Maha Vihara Maitreya, a Buddhist temple that attracts a steady stream of devotees in the North Sumatran capital of Medan. The city is home to the largest Chinese community on Sumatra island.PHOTO: LANA PRIATNA
Businessman Sukiwi Tjong (left) says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso (right), citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, b
The faces of President Joko Widodo and his running mate Ma'ruf Amin adorn the canvas backs of rickshaws in North Sumatra.PHOTO: LANA PRIATNA
Businessman Sukiwi Tjong (left) says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso (right), citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, b
Businessman Sukiwi Tjong (above) says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso, citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, believes the pair can fix the country's economic issues.PHOTO: LANA PRIATNA
Businessman Sukiwi Tjong (left) says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso (right), citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, b
Businessman Sukiwi Tjong says Mr Prabowo Subianto is the man best suited to lead Indonesia amid heightened tensions. Entrepreneur Sugiat Santoso (above), citing the strong business backgrounds of Mr Prabowo and his running mate Sandiaga Uno, believes the pair can fix the country's economic issues.PHOTO: LANA PRIATNA

Indonesia will hold its presidential and legislative elections on April 17. With more than 192 million people eligible to vote, these 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 archipelago. Today, we look at North Sumatra province.

Medan's darkest memory haunts its Chinese community in the run-up to the presidential polls.

About two decades ago, anti-Chinese violence roiled Indonesia, leaving more than a thousand dead and prompting scores of Chinese Indonesians to flee the country.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 25, 2019, with the headline 'Wanted: President who can keep the peace '. Print Edition | Subscribe