The Friday 313 Rally, Does it Show the Real of Moslem Power in Indonesia?
The city is gearing up for another large protest with Islamic conservative groups planning to stage a rally on Friday to demand President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo unseat incumbent Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama from his post. Initiated by the Muslim People Forum (FUI), the rally will start from Istiqlal Grand Mosque in Central Jakarta right after Friday prayer and will end in front of the State Palace. The rally will pass Jl. Merdeka Timur, the US Embassy on Jl. Merdeka Selatan, City Hall and the Horse Statue. The FUI claimed that at least 100,000 people will join Friday’s protest. However, the police have predicted the number would be much smaller.
A number of well-known figures, including National Mandate Party (PAN) patron Amien Rais and Rizieq Shihab, the firebrand leader of the hard-line group Islam Defenders Front (FPI), are expected to join the rally. The FUI ensures that the protest will not turn violent as the participants have no intentions other than to ask Jokowi to dismiss Ahok due to his status as a defendant in a blasphemy case, according to the rally’s coordinator and FUI secretary-general, Muhammad Al Khaththath.
Khaththath referred to Article 83 of Law No. 23/2014 on regional administration, which says that a regional head should be temporarily dismissed if named a suspect of a crime with a prison sentence of at least five years, corruption, terrorism, treason and/ or other actions that could divide the nation.
The 313 rally is a follow up of two previous rallies, on Nov. 4 and Dec. 2, conducted by Islamic organizations to protest blasphemy allegedly committed by Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama.
The rally is going to be held in less than three weeks before the Jakarta Gubernatorial Election runoff voting day, in which Ahok is trying to keep his gubernatorial seat from being taken by his rival, Anies Baswedan.
While the police have called on the protest to not be politically motivated, Khaththath said that after the rally ended, the protesters would gather at a mosque to show their support for a Muslim to be the next governor of Jakarta.
However, two of the country’s largest Islamic organizations, Nadhlatul Ulama (NU) and Muhammadiyah, as well as the MUI itself, have denounced the rally, with MUI chairman Maruf Amin saying the rally is unnecessary. Speaking after a meeting with Jokowi on Thursday, Maruf asked everyone to wait for the court to proceed with Ahok’s trial, expected to end in May. To anticipate any violent breakout during the rally, the Jakarta Police have coordinated with the National Police and the Indonesian Military to secure the area around the State Palace.
Previously, the Jakarta Police have requested members of mass organizations taking part in Friday’s “313” rally to not bring up political issues or anything related with the Jakarta gubernatorial election. “It would be better if they hold joint prayers instead,” Jakarta Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. Argo Yuwono said as quoted by Antara in Jakarta on Wednesday. He asserted that any protesters bringing a political agenda related with the Jakarta gubernatorial election during the rally would face consequences. Argo said the police had received a notification from Muslim People’s Forum (FUI) on their plan to hold a rally on Friday. The FUI leaders sent a notification letter to the National Police, who later forwarded it to the Jakarta Police, he went on.
Ahok is currently being tried for alleged blasphemy that angered conservative Muslim groups. The case triggered at least two rallies considered among the largest protests the country had ever seen, on Nov. 4 and Dec. 2 last year. Ahok is a Christian of Chinese-descent, while Anies is a Muslim of Arab descent, who has voiced his agreement of the belief that it is haram (forbidden) for a Muslim to vote for non-Muslim leaders.
Does it show the real of Moslem power in Indonesia?
I think the Friday 313 rally doesn’t show the real of Moslem power in Indonesia, because consolidation effort among Moslem organization in Indonesia doesn’t run well. It was barried by the differences of political paradigm and being admitted or not, the majority of Moslem in Indonesia is a tolerant and moderate communities.
It’s make senses if the Muslim People Forum (FUI), Jakarta Moslem Governor (GMJ), Indonesian Syuhada Forum (FSI) etc want if the next Jakarta’s governor is a moslem figure, because in the Islam teaching has been educated that all of moslem must be choosen and directed by moslem leaders.
However, the Friday 313 rally will be gained by Anies-Sandi because they will be known how much amount of mass will choose them on April 19, 2017, eventhough some of political interest groups have a different ideas on it. They have outspoken if the effect of the Friday 313 rally didn’t significant to raise a political support for candidates like Anies-Sandi.
The successful of 212 rally last year which attended by millions people were predicted it didn’t happen again, because the majority of moslem people in Indonesia want if the Jakarta’s governor elections shouldn’t be intervered by “hidden scenarios” to make it chaotic.
The majority of moslem people in Indonesia didn’t worry if they must be ruled by non-Moslem leader, because moslem communities in Indonesia are a moderate and tolerant communities so they’re sure if other religion communities in Indonesia will respect to moslem communities in Indonesia.
I think both of Ahok and Anies are a brilliant political leader asset for Indonesia because they’re always build a common values to respect each other. We must be careful about the spreading of hoaxes at social media which said that left-wing groups in the behind of Ahok and the other sides hoaxes at social media have been judged that radical and hardliner moslem groups related to terror groups in the behind of Anies.
I think all of people in Indonesia have been agreed that our national tenet, Pancasila can be gathered all of national stakeholders in Indonesia whatever their religion, their tribes and their races because in Pancasila teachings, we must respect to whom respect to us.
Actually, the Friday 313 rally doesn’t show the real of moslem power in Indonesia, even its could be endangered moslem image if those event finally ended by chaotic. I hope its couldn’t happen. Now, we must educate our people to respect each others because mutual respect can be developed the bright and shine of Indonesia’s future. Hopefully.
*) Erlangga Pratama, Cersia’s founder. He earned his master at security and political issues at the University of Indonesia (UI).