TNI, Polri to maintain neutrality amid president's son's candidacy: VP

TNI, Polri to maintain neutrality amid president's son's candidacy: VP

Vice President Ma'ruf Amin (third left) during a press statement at the Vice Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Tuesday, November 14, 2023. (ANTARA/Rangga Pandu A J/rst)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin pressed for maintaining neutrality of state civil servants (ASN), National Police (Polri), and Indonesian Defense Forces (TNI) amid President Joko Widodo's eldest son Gibran Rakabuming Raka's participation in the 2024 election.

"Even though the president's son is participating in the 2024 election, neutrality must still be maintained," he noted after attending the Yudha Dharma Utama Award Ceremony at the Vice Presidential Palace here Tuesday.

Amin made the statement in response to a question regarding Indonesian Army Chief of Staff General Agus Subiyanto, who is said to be close to the president.

Amin said he had complete belief in TNI's commitment to staying neutral in the 2024 general election. Moreover, he stated that a person's closeness to the president is quite relative in nature.

"I believe that all of our troops, including General Subiyanto, will remain neutral. All duties must be carried out according to the rules," he affirmed.

Meanwhile, General Subiyanto, who was present to accompany the vice president, stated that the TNI institution has guidelines that regulate the prohibition of TNI members from engaging in political practice.

He stated that violations of the regulation could result in disciplinary penalties from the unit.

"If we find any violation of TNI's regulation in the election, it will come from an individual and not the whole institution," he emphasized.

He explained that his closeness with President Widodo was due to their work in Surakarta, Central Java. Subiyanto noted that he often communicated and collaborated with elements of the Regional Leadership Coordination Forum (Forkopimda).

"I am close to any regional leader and not only during my duty in Solo. I am also close to (former) Palu mayor, Pasha Ungu, and also former West Java governor Ridwan Kamil when I was serving as the regional military commander III (Pangdam III)," he explained.

The general emphasized the need for the TNI and Forkopimda to collaborate to boost community welfare, among other things. 

Related news: TNI must stay neutral, loyal during election: General Abdurachman
Related news: Indonesian military to remain neutral in regional elections