Jakarta (ANTARA) - Newly inducted Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Saiful Rahmat Dasuki revealed that he would continue to apply religious moderation policies and focus on assisting Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas during the remainder of the cabinet term.

"To complete given duties and functions, assisting the minister, and ensuring the success of the minister's principal programs for the next 1.5 years on religious moderation, realize greater tolerance, and maintain plurality in Indonesia," Dasuki stated at the Presidential Palace here, Monday.

The deputy minister reiterated his commitment to working in line with the wishes and instructions of President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) and Minister Qoumas.

Meanwhile, Dasuki said he is replacing his predecessor Zainut Tauhid Saadi, his colleague in the United Development Party (PPP), who has been named a legislative candidate in the 2024 General Elections.

"This reshuffle is indeed the president's prerogative, but coincidentally, the president also asked for it. In the end, the party chair gave the mandate to me," the deputy minister stated.

Earlier, Jokowi confirmed that PPP had requested the replacement of the deputy minister.

"It was the party's request," the president stated with regard to the reshuffle on the deputy minister.

Meanwhile, acting PPP chairperson Muhamad Mardiono stated that the cabinet reshuffle is within the president's prerogatives, as he has appropriate instruments to determine which figures can serve in the cabinet.

"As the chair of a political party, I am required to assist Mr President to harmonize our development in the remainder of the current government's term," Mardiono remarked.

Dasuki was one of the several party cadres whose names were submitted to the president to consider their inclusion in government ministries or offices, he noted.

Mardiono also clarified that no bad intentions were behind Saadi's discharge, stressing that changes in the president's cabinet are inevitable.

"It is an inevitability, so as part of the Indonesian nation, we should abide by Mr President's prerogatives," he remarked.

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Translator: Desca Lidya N, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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