Imparsial Criticizes Prabowo and Wiranto's Nomination in Presidential Election

Imparsial Criticizes Prabowo and Wiranto's Nomination in Presidential Election

The Jakarta Post [web site]
Desy Nurhayati

With the presidential election coming up in two months' time, non-governmental organization on human rights issues Imparsial criticizes yet again the candidacies of two former military heavyweights Prabowo Subianto and Wiranto in the election.

The public should question the nomination of Prabowo and Wiranto as candidates in the election, because the two were considered to be held responsible for a number of rights abuse cases in the country, Imparsial director Rusdi Marpaung said Wednesday.

The group cited the abduction of human rights activists during the 1998 turmoil, East Timor case and the Semanggi case.

“It is improper for them to be candidates of this nation’s leader amid unfinished investigation into those cases,” Rusdi said.

“We condemn all political parties and elites that nominate the two as presidential or vice presidential candidates.

"The nomination proves that political coalition is built only for the sake of power, not for the improvement of democracy and human rights,” he said.

Imparsial regretted that the country had failed to correct its past mistakes, and instead sided with human rights abusers.

The group said that it would be wise if Prabowo and Wiranto proved themselves innocent at court, rather than dodging their involvement and even running for presidency.

“It is hard to imagine there will be countries that are willing to cooperate with a president or vice president who are considered as human rights abusers by the international community. This condition will taint our image as a great nation,” Rusdi said.