Thousands gather in Jakarta to support Muslim candidates
Cii Radio| Ayesha Ismail| 13 February 2017| 15 Jumadul ula 1438
Jakarta residents head to the polls on Wednesday to pick their next governor, in a contest which analysts say has morphed into a proxy fight ahead of a presidential election in 2019.
More than 100,000 Indonesians descended on Jakarta’s grand mosque on Saturday to call on people to vote for Muslim candidates running against the city’s incumbent Christian governor in an upcoming election.
Saturday is the final day of campaigning for Wednesday’s vote in which Ethnic Chinese Christian governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama is facing two prominent Muslim challengers.
Purnama, known by his nickname Ahok, won popularity for his no-nonsense style and determination to clean up Jakarta.
But he has seen a once unassailable poll lead whittled away after being hauled into court for a blasphemy trial that critics view as unfair and politically motivated.
The allegations against him centre on comments he made about a Quranic verse.
He accused his opponents of using the verse, which some interpret as meaning Muslims should only support Muslim leaders, to trick people into voting against him.
Source – Trt world