INDONESIA: The Chairwoman of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP), Megawati Soekarnoputri, recently shared an intriguing analogy regarding the upcoming 2024 general elections during a gathering with PDIP members in Yogyakarta, on Tuesday (22 Aug).
She revealed that President Joko Widodo, commonly known as Jokowi, had posed a question to her about the anticipated atmosphere of the elections, to which she responded by comparing it to a dance.
Speaking before a crowd that included the Central Java Governor and PDIP’s presidential candidate, Ganjar Pranowo, Megawati recounted the conversation with President Jokowi.
“After his first term, right after his second term ended, he called me and asked, ‘Ma’am, how do you think the atmosphere will be during the upcoming elections?’ So, I told him, it would be like dancing,” she shared with a smile.
Intrigued by her response, President Jokowi delved further, inquiring about the connection between politics and dancing.
Megawati, in her characteristic style, explained how dancing involves individuals moving solo, in pairs, or as a group, sometimes even changing partners.
She drew parallels to the political landscape, suggesting that the 2024 elections would resemble the diverse and dynamic nature of dancing.
According to Megawati, she envisioned the election atmosphere as symbolically similar to dancing, where it could involve individuals, pairs, or groups, and the tempo could vary from slow-motion to vibrant and energetic, mirroring different dance styles.
Her words were met with a lighthearted laugh from President Jokowi.
Megawati also called upon PDIP members to actively engage with the public and grassroots, echoing her belief that the party’s success in the upcoming elections depended on maintaining this lively and dynamic approach.
“It’s going to be like that dance. So, see it now. Don’t later think, ‘Oh, why are we confined? Why are we being belittled? Just stay calm while working. Go down to the grassroots and greet them. There’s no other way,” Megawati emphasized, rallying the party members.
Megawati’s dance analogy garnered diverse reactions.
Budiman Sudjatmiko, a PDIP politician, praised her mature and pragmatic perspective, stating that such dialogues were essential to maintaining a healthy political environment in the lead-up to elections.
“So, in my opinion, that shows her maturity, as someone who has matured in all aspects. I believe we need calm dialogues for dynamics like this to avoid tension,” said Budiman at Senayan Indoor Tennis, Jakarta, on Tuesday (22 Aug) night.
Budiman claimed that Megawati’s statement had been conveyed to him. The dance was metaphorically referred to as the usual political dynamics leading up to elections.
“Yes, I think Ibu Mega’s statement was also made to me when I met her at her house, that before politics, there’s usually a dance, a rhythm, and dynamics; it’s a natural process,” said Budiman.
However, Budiman himself has taken a different political path, publicly supporting Prabowo Subianto for the 2024 presidential race.
His support was conveyed through the declaration of the united Prabowo-Budiman Volunteers (Prabu).
He justified his decision by recalling Megawati’s emphasis on the need for strategic leadership.
“Ibu Mega always says that Indonesia needs leaders with strategic perspectives,” said Budiman. He believed that only Prabowo, among the current candidates, possessed this strategic vision, differentiating him from Ganjar Pranowo and Anies Baswedan.
“Yes, perhaps my actions are considered wrong administratively and organizationally. And because of that, I am prepared to be accountable for it,” he said.
Nevertheless, he explained that his political stance was based on an ideological interpretation of Megawati’s statement about strategic leadership.
“However, I believe that ideologically and strategically, I am translating the position that Ibu (Mega) has consistently conveyed. So, ideologically and strategically, I don’t see it as a mistake,” he stated.
This move has put Budiman at odds with PDIP, with the party urging him to resign. If he doesn’t comply, the party has indicated its intention to dismiss him from his role within PDIP.