Give us change, not rock songs, say Indonesia's young voters
Sunday, July 06, 2014 - 01:54
As Indonesia's presidential elections heat up, the youth vote becomes more important than ever with politicians launching cool campaigns to lure young voters. Sarah Toms reports.
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A two finger salute -- Indonesia style.
It's a simple sign to make cool the number two -- the spot where presidential candidate Jokowi Widodo's name appears on the election ballot.
Widodo's only rival Prabowo Subianto, who is at the top of the ballot, has also jumped on the bandwagon.
He's backed by rock star Ahmad Dhani, in a nationalistic song to drum up support.
Besides rock songs, both teams are blitzing social media to get young people involved.
The race between Widodo and Subianto is razor close making the youth vote all the more important. But not everyone is easily swayed.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) 21-YEAR-OLD FIRST-TIME VOTER, AULIA ANGGITA SAYING:
"Like rock stars or just saying that we have to be nationalistic it doesn't gain our vote, it's saying that we are not smart enough to actually calculate the programme (offered by the presidential candidates). It's saying that like our whole education doesn't matter. I think that it's time for them to realize that for us what we want is clear changes."
Nearly a third of Indonesia's 187 million voters are younger than 29. In the election on July 9th, this huge group of young voters will be crucial in deciding who'll run Southeast Asia's biggest economy.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) 21-YEAR-OLD FIRST TIME VOTER DAVIN HADIKOSOMO SAYING:
"The first thing that I really want, we actually really want, is the reformation of the bureaucrats, because from the reformation of the bureaucrats the people will follow the leaders. So when the leaders are good the people will also, I hope, will be good."
But issues are as important as image in a country where economic growth has slowed. Many young Indonesians are concerned more about employment, stability and order rather than whether a candidate's catchy campaign song hits the right note.
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