So, we can conclude that in general the elections abroad have been held smoothly and peacefully ..."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The number of Indonesians exercising their franchise in the presidential elections in Hong Kong has increased by 400 percent from last Aprils legislative elections, a committee executive claimed.

"The number of voters in Hong Kong has increased by 400 percent from that in the previous April 9 legislative elections," Chief of the Working Group of the Overseas Election Committee (PPLN) Wahid Supriyadi said at the office of the General Elections Commission (KPU) here on Monday.

In addition, a number of PPLNs reported an increase by about 100 percent of voters in a number of overseas cities such as Washington DC, Kuala Lumpur, Sydney, and Melbourne, Wahid added.

Observing the increase of voters in a number of countries, he concluded that the implementation of the presidential elections in foreign countries had been running well.

"So, we can conclude that in general the elections abroad have been held smoothly and peacefully, despite the fact that a number of notes had to be made," he said.

Regarding a report that hundreds of Indonesian citizens were not able to cast their votes, he said that such issues had occurred because the local authorities had granted the license to organize the elections only until 5.00 pm local time.

"The PPLN in Hong Kong was only given time until 5.00 pm local time because the polling station (Victoria Park) was located in a public site," he said.

KPU Commissioner Hadar Nafis Gumay said the limited period was based on the time given by the Hong Kong government because the location used for polling site belonged to the local government.

"The condition will have been different if the polling station had been located at the Embassys or Consulate Generals offices. So, we should respect the policy of the local government," Hadar said.

As it has been shown in social media networks, hundreds of Indonesian citizens in Hong Kong had staged a protest because they were hampered from casting their votes on Sunday (July 6).

They launched a protest because they were hampered after they arrived at the Victoria Park after 5.00 pm local time.

The Indonesian citizens overseas were organized to cast their votes for the Indonesian presidential elections on July 4-6, 2014, earlier than the July 9 presidential elections in the country.

The KPU has issued a letter of decision regarding the polling date tor Indonesias overseas election committees (PPLN) in 130 countries.

"We have regulated the overseas polling schedule for PPLN in 130 countries through a KPU decree No. 464/Kpts/KPU/Year 2014," KPU Commissioner Ferry Kurnia Rizkiyansyah said on Thursday last week.

He said that the decree regulated that although polling will be held earlier, the counting of votes will be carried out in line with that in the country on Wednesday, July 9.

Based on the early voting facility, the election will be held on holidays so that Indonesian citizens abroad will be able to cast their votes at the overseas polling stations.

The KPU had organized the presidential campaigns during the period June 7-July 5, before Indonesians vote for their choices in the elections on July 9, 2014.

A total of 190,307,134 eligible voters have been registered by the KPU for July 9, 2014, presidential elections, consisting of 188,268,423 voters at home and 2,038,711 overseas.

Of the total, 95,220,799 are male and 95,086,335 are female.

The Indonesian elections will be contested by two pairs: Prabowo Subianto-Hatta Rajasa and Joko Widodo (Jokowi)-Jusuf Kalla.

Prabowo Subianto is a retired military general and the founder of the Great Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra), while his running mate, Hatta Rajasa, is a former coordinating minister for economic affairs and the chairman of the National Mandate Party (PAN).

Jokowi is Jakartas governor and a cadre of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP), while his running mate, Jusuf Kalla, is a former vice president and a senior politician of the Golkar Party.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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