Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo's (Jokowi's) new cabinet line-up for his second-term administration for 2019-2024 included the head of state's contender in two consecutive presidential elections, retired general Prabowo Subianto, as defense minister.
Jokowi announced the complete list of his cabinet ministers that comprised old hands and fresh faces at the Merdeka Palace here on Wednesday.
Last Monday, Prabowo Subianto, the founder and chairman of Gerindra Party's Advisory Board, was called to the presidential palace by Jokowi. On the occasion, he was accompanied by Edhy Prabowo, the deputy chairman of Gerindra.
He accepted the offer to become defense minister to replace Ryamizard Ryacudu, while Edhy Prabowo as maritime affairs and fisheries minister to succeed Susi Pudjiastuti.
Prabowo Subianto, the son of Indonesia's prominent economist Sumitro Djojohadikusumo, failed to become Golkar Party chairman and decided to establish Gerindra (Movement of Great Indonesia) party in 2008.
He contested thrice in the direct presidential elections but success had eluded him until now. He was the vice presidential candidate, running mate of presidential candidate Megawati Soekarnoputri in 2009, and later the presidential candidate to go head-to-head with Jokowi during the 2014 and 2019 presidential elections that showcased a deep national divide.
Subianto was a former commander of the Indonesian Army's Special Forces (Kopassus) during the administration of Indonesia's second president Soeharto, who was also his father-in-law.
In the meantime, the People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) Chairman Bambang Soesatyo is confident that Subianto is the right choice for defense minister owing to his competence in defense affairs.
"I have heard that he could be appointed defense minister. Yes, it is because of his competence in the field of defense," the senior politician of Golkar Party remarked here, Tuesday.
He expressed hope that Indonesia would have a strong defense system in place and garner respect in Asia and the global arena.
Soesatyo voiced Jokowi's keenness for political reconciliation to ensure stability during his subsequent five-year term by appointing Subianto.
"I think what is taking place these days, including the presence of Prabowo, is a political reconciliation that Jokowi is making for the stability of the government in the next five years," Soesatyo remarked.
Reconciliation has taken place in the Parliament, and it is further strengthened in the Jokowi-Ma'ruf Amin government's cabinet, he stated.
Source: ANTARA News