2 November 2008

The 2009 general elections and illusions within the movement

September 10, 2008

By Budi Wardoyo(1)

In the lead up to the 2009 general elections, the political map of the movements appears to be undergoing a large polarisation, particularly a polarisation between the political decision to takepart in the elections as a contestant (by joining an existing political party) verses the political decision of refusing to become an electoral participant.

The decision to take part in the 2009 elections, which has been taken, by among others, by thePeople’s Democratic Party (PRD) and its affiliated organisations(2), has been motivated by thefollowing arguments:

1. That becoming an electoral participant will provide greater space for the movements to broadencampaigns on populist programs;

2. By broadening campaigns on populist programs, it is hoped that it will expand the people’s support (in the form of extending the structure of the movement);

3. Thus the people’s capacity and potential to struggle will grow even stronger;

4. If they make good in the elections, and in end succeed in obtaining seats in parliament, then thespace for such campaigns will be even broader again.