Mataram (ANTARA) - Presidential candidate number 02 Prabowo Subianto conducted his open campaign at the Karang Pale field of Mataram city in West Nusa Tenggara Province on Tuesday by echoing his pledge to fight corruption fiercely to build a just and prosperous Indonesia.

"Our people are sick of corruption and of being treated unfairly. Why? Because much of Indonesia's wealth has been taken out of the country," he told several thousands of supporters who flocked to the field to hear his campaign speech.

If he wins the presidential elections, due to be held on April 17, and becomes the Indonesian president, he would build a corruption-free government to bring justice and prosperity to the people at large, said Prabowo, the founder of the Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra).

He reiterated his statement that the leakage of state funds was predicted to reach around Rp1,000 trillion but many political elite in the country were unhappy with what he said and asked him to prove it.

"Please ask the government. Why do you ask me? If I were the Indonesian president, I would be responsible for it," he told thousands of his supporters attending his campaign.

Subianto then conveyed his pledge that he would resolve the state fund leak if he were elected as the Indonesian president. As part of his strategies in combating corruption, he would raise the salaries of law enforcers, including judges, prosecutors, as well as police and military personnel.

"The salaries of our judges need to be significantly increased because they should not be bribed. The judges are the last resort for our people to complain. Thus, if their salaries are increased, they will think of our people," he said, adding that he had spent more than 30 years of his life as a soldier in the Indonesian military.

As a soldier, he thought that whatever the military personnel received was all from the people, said Subianto, who chose Sandiaga Uno as his running mate to challenge the Joko Widodo-Ma'ruf Amin pair in the upcoming presidential race.

In connection with the 2019 presidential election, the General Election Commission (KPU) has allowed the two presidential and vice presidential candidate pairs to conduct open campaigns from March 24 to April 13, 2019.

The KPU has also prepared five rounds of presidential debates, broadcast live by several television channels. The presidential debates and open campaigns are expected to help some 192 million eligible voters, who will participate in the democratic process, to learn more about the capacity and capability of the two pairs.

Empowered with sufficient information about the candidates, they will be able to vote rationally. The government has even set a target that the parliamentary and presidential elections, due to be held simultaneously throughout the country on April 17, will see the participation of at least 77.5 percent of voters.

Home Minister Tjahjo Kumolo recently said that this year's participation rate would be higher than those of the 2009 and 2014 general elections which were recorded at 71 and 74 percent, respectively.

Translator: Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Eliswan Azly
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