Jokowi never politicizes prayer (shalat): national campaign team

Jokowi never politicizes prayer (shalat): national campaign team

President Joko Widodo, along with his family performed Ied al Fitr prayers at Astrid Square at Bogor Botanical Garden in June 2018. (ANTARA/Desca Lidya Natalia)

Jakarta, (ANTARA News) - Ace Hasan Syadzily, a spokesman for the Joko Widodo (Jokowi)-Ma`ruf Amin National Campaign Team, stressed that President Jokowi had never politicized his prayer activities.

"Pak Jokowi has never politicized prayers or houses of worship. Unlike Prabowo, who politicized the Friday prayers, so that Bawaslu and takmir of the mosque were banned," Syadzily noted in a written statement in Jakarta on Friday.

Syadzily remarked that the Prabowo-Sandi National Winning Body were unable to avoid that there was a mobilization of Gerindra cadres to attend Friday prayer services at mosques in Semarang.

According to Syadzily, the letter of invitation to perform Friday prayers indicates an attempt to politicize the Jumatan, or Friday prayer, in Semarang.

"If it is not a political motive, why spread the invitation for Friday prayers," Syadzily pointed out.

Speaking in connection with the photo of Jokowi performing the prayer service, he clarified that it took place without any special design.

He stressed that the issue of prayer is a personal matter of each congregation to fulfill its obligations as Muslims.

"Pak Jokowi`s activities, as a president, must have news value, so photographers and reporters will automatically and naturally capture Jokowi performing prayer. There is no mobilization of journalists or photographers to take pictures of Jokowi`s prayer. We only facilitate journalists or photographers to capture Mr. Jokowi performing prayers," he explained.

He stated that in a photo of Jokowi praying, the prayers were deliberately reversed to make the congregational prayers solemn. Moreover, it does not violate the prayer rules.

Reporting by Rangga Pandu Asmara Jingga, Eliswan Azly
Editing by Suharto