Most people in favor of postponing 2020 regional head elections

Most people in favor of postponing 2020 regional head elections

The results of a survey on Pilkada conducted by Polmatrix Indonesia, from Sept 1 to 10, 2020. (ANTARA/HO-Polmatrix Indonesia)

The survey findings show that 72.4 percent of the respondents prefer that the 2020 Pilkada be postponed in all regions over fears of crowding, thereby leading to the creation of a new COVID-19 clusters
Jakarta (ANTARA) - A survey conducted by Polmatrix Indonesia found that the greater bulk of people opted for postponement of the 2020 simultaneously regional head elections (Pilkada) amid the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

"The survey findings show that 72.4 percent of the respondents prefer that the 2020 Pilkada be postponed in all regions over fears of crowding, thereby leading to the creation of a new COVID-19 clusters," Polmatrix Indonesia Executive Director Dendik Rulianto stated during a press release here on Wednesday.

Some 12.1 percent of the survey participants preferred that the Pilkada be postponed in areas designated as red zones or high risk.

In the meantime, 10.6 percent of the survey participants were in favor of the Pilkada being held according to schedule, while the remaining 4.9 percent said they did not know or did not answer.

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The 2020 Pilkada, initially scheduled on September 9, 2020, will be held in 270 regions on December 9.

An influx of supporters amassed during the recent registration of prospective candidates, and this is projected to increase during the campaign period, Rulianto pointed out.

The 2020 regional head elections will elect governors in nine provinces, district heads in 224 districts, and mayors in 37 cities. At least 738 candidate pairs will compete for positions in various regions.

"You can imagine the size of the regions that hold regional elections and the number of contestants, who will compete to win votes in each region," he remarked.

So far, at least 63 candidates for the 2020 Pilkada have contracted COVID-19, and the figure is likely to increase.

Moreover, several officers of the General Election Commission (KPU) and Election Supervisory Board (Bawaslu) at the central and local offices also tested positive for COVID-19, as there were violations despite the application of health protocols during the election process.

Rulianto opined that even without holding Pilkada, the spread of the virus would continue. Moreover, the Pilkada process was going on.

"With a campaign pattern that still relies on mass gathering, the virus will spread more quickly. The impact would be detrimental to the economy and people's livelihoods, as those regions would finally be compelled to implement strict large-scale social distancing (PSBB) measures," Rulianto stated.

The Polmatrix Indonesian Survey was conducted on Sept 1-10, 2020, with two thousand respondents representing all provinces in Indonesia.

The survey was conducted by telephonically contacting survey respondents, who were selected randomly. The survey margin of error is ± 2.2 percent at the 95-percent confidence level.

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