Speaking of Asia: Confident Jokowi sets the course for Indonesia

Getting Prabowo and Nadiem into the new Cabinet points to where he intends to steer the country in his second presidential term while avoiding some of its tricky undercurrents

In July 2015, my editor Warren Fernandez and I travelled to Indonesia for an interview with the country's new President, Mr Joko Widodo. The meeting took place in Bogor - Mr Joko, an outsider to Jakarta's power elite, somehow seemed more comfortable in the presidential palace there than in the national capital. What's more, two key officials who advised him on economic and foreign policy frequently interrupted the interview, either to check the President on his figures or to steer his remarks in a certain direction.

I doubt that any official would dare to correct Mr Joko so openly these days. Certainly, not when there are outsiders in the room.

Please or to continue reading the full article.

Get unlimited access to all stories at $0.99/month

  • Latest headlines and exclusive stories
  • In-depth analyses and award-winning multimedia content
  • Get access to all with our no-contract promotional package at only $0.99/month for the first 3 months*

*Terms and conditions apply.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 25, 2019, with the headline 'Confident Jokowi sets the course for Indonesia'. Subscribe