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Trade union to announce choice for presidential candidate on May Day

Detik News - March 31, 2018

Dwi Andayani, Jakarta – The Indonesian Workers Trade Union Confederation (KSPI) will announce its choice for presidential candidate (capres) on May Day. A number of names such as President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and Greater Indonesia Movement Party (Gerindra) chairperson Prabowo Subianto are still being considered.

"The leadership met the other day and later at KSPI's national working meeting on April 28-30 we will decide on which capres we'll support. We have set May Day to announce the name, like in 2014", said KSPI President Said Iqbal during a discussion at the Sang Akar Coffee Studio on Jl. Tebet Dalam I in South Jakarta on Saturday March 31.

In addition to this, workers will also ask that a cabinet position be given to a worker. According to Iqbal, with a labour representative as a minister it will be easier to implement a political contract.

"We are asking to be given a ministerial post, I'm not too embarrassed to say this rather than asking for money later. Because if [a labour representative] becomes a minister they can implement a political contract. If they don't want to give us a ministerial post, yes well we won't support them", said Iqbal.

One of the names that the trade union is still considering championing is Widodo. Why? "Because the PP 78 [Government Regulation 78/2015] has still not been revoked so it was a long and difficult internal discussion. The PP 78 is of great concern", said Iqbal. (dkp/dkp)


1. Government Regulation Number 78/2015 on setting the minimum wage ties annual wage rises to inflation and productivity rather than the reasonable cost of living index which was used in the 2003 Labour Law. As well as putting pressure on wages, the regulation effectively abolishes the function of wage councils, which are made up of representatives from the government, employers and trade unions in negotiating wage rises, and allows the government to set wage rises unilaterally.

2. KSPI president Said Iqbal, who supported former Special Forces (Kopassus) commander retired General Prabowo Subianto's failed 2014 presidential bid, also supported the Prabowo backed Anies Baswedan-Sandiaga Uno ticket in the religiously and ethnically divisive Jakarta gubernatorial election in 2017. He later withdrew his support for newly elected Governor Baswedan calling him a "liar" after he failed to honor a political contract pledging not to use the PP 78/2015 to determine the 2018 minimum wage rise.

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was Umumkan Capres Saat May Day, Serikat Buruh Minta Jatah Menteri.]

Source: https://news.detik.com/berita/3946548/umumkan-capres-saat-may-day-serikat-buruh-minta-jatah-menteri.

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