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President Joko Widodo

Politician

Joko Widodo, also known as Jokowi, is Indonesia’s current and seventh president. Widod, with his populist campaigning style and anti-corruption platform, drew international attention, he became the first Indonesian president who did not come from a military or political elite when he was elected in July 2014. Widodo’s achievements have been recognized with numerous awards including the World Mayor Prize and scoring the position in ‘Top 10 Indonesian Mayors of 2008’.

Joko Widodo, or Jokowi as he is called in Indonesia, was re-elected President in April 2019 with 55.5 percent of the vote and will spend his second and final term until 2024. Running against an opponent who questioned his Islamic credentials, President Widodo selected Ma’ruf Amin as running mate. The Indonesian Ulema Council, the country’s leading Muslim clerical organization, is led by Ma’ruf Amin.

President Widodo is Indonesia’s first president who is not a member of the military or the political class. He is of Javanese descent and comes from a modest family. His father had a small furniture business that struggled to make ends meet on a regular basis. They worked hard to get him to university, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in forestry. Widodo worked in the forestry service of a state enterprise in Aceh for three years after graduating before returning to his family’s business.

Before becoming the governor of Jakarta in September 2012, Widodo served as the mayor of Surakarta. He had close contact with his constituents as a successful mayor. He concentrated on marketing the city as a center of Javanese culture while also improving the public transportation system, healthcare, and community relations. He built a reputation as a “clean” politician, avoiding the corruption and nepotism accusations that beset most politicians.

With his election as governor of Jakarta, he continued his political success. As governor, he was as effective, instituting significant reforms in education, public transportation, street vendors and traditional markets, and flood management.

Widodo’s achievements as mayor and governor have been recognized with numerous awards, he received 3rd place in the 2012 World Mayor Prize, one of the ‘Top 10 Indonesian Mayors of 2008’. It was no surprise when Megawati Sukarnoputri, the former President of Indonesia, chose Widodo as the PDI-P party’s presidential candidate. He has also benefited immensely from the support of numerous musicians and artists, which greatly aided him in his presidential campaign.

President Widodo has become well-known for making impromptu visits to local villages to meet and hear directly from residents. This has allowed him to address their problems and complaints personally, allowing him to build a close personal relationship with the public.

Despite the fact that economic development has lagged behind expectations under Widodo’s reign, considerable investments in infrastructure and social services have ensured that Widodo retains popular popularity. He is still seen as a trustworthy leader, having presided over a successful 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta.

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