"The meeting has decided to name Rusdi Kirana as the partys deputy general chairman. The participation of the businessman in the party will mark a new era," the partys general chairman Muhaimin Iskandar after the meeting at the partys headquarters.
Muhaimin, who is currently also minister of manpower, said Rusdi was willing to join PKB because he wished to continue to serve in the fight of NU (Nahdlatul Ulama, one of Indonesias largest Islamic organizations) and the late Gus Dur (former NU leader and president) along with PKB.
He said Rusdi is one of Gus Durs admirers and he hoped with Rusdis participation NU, PKB and the people could bring more goodness to the Indonesian nation.
"The main task of the deputy general chairman would be representing me in various events. Besides a partys general chairman I am also a minister as well as a legislative candidate and so I would be really busy ahead of the 2014 general elections," he said.
Rusdi Kirana meanwhile said that he was one of the businessmen that was formed in the reform era and he owned it much to Gus Dur.
"The reform movement has created openness for doing business in the country. Gus Dur has also made me as a Chinese descent feel accepted to be equal with other Indonesian citizens," he said.
He said Gus Dur and NU have special significance for him and in view of that he finally decided to enter politics which he added he had never imagined before.
"Businessmen must also participate to advance the nation and one way of doing that is through politics (or) by joining a political party along with the people," he said.
reporting by dewanto samodro