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Gianyar PDI Secretariat besieged by pro-Megawati supporters

Bali Post - 12 April, 1997

Gianyar – Scores of pro-Megawati PDI supporters in Gianyar besieged the pro-Soerjadi Secretariat during a protest on Friday (11/4). Wearing religious attire they drove around the offices on motorbikes and protested, refusing to accept the existence of [Soerjadi's] version of the congress.

An uproar broke out when the head of the pro-Soerjadi secretariat, Wayan Mastra, came out to face the crowd when his foot was run over by a motorbike. Fortunately, scores of security personnel are still guarding the front of the offices in the hope that the action would not spread.

After yelling protests, the demonstrators moved of and sat along the side of a street not far from the offices. "We are waiting for our friends from Denpaser [the capital of Bali] who will pray at the Lempuyang [temple]", said one of the pro-Mega PDI cadre. Not long after, they left in an Easterly director towards the pro-Megawati "secretariat".

A pro-Megawati PDI figure, AA Tranggono, said the demonstrators considered the formation of the PDI resulting from the [Medan] congress lead by Soerjadi and being illegitimate. "We don't want them here", said one PDI leader. According to Tranggono, "This demonstration is proof that the masses do not support the pro-Soerjadi PDI".

They later formed a convoy of vehicles and traveled though the Gianyar district towards the Lempuyang temple, Karangasem. Police monitoring the procession said they were taking no special precautions.

[Abridged translation from Bali Post - James Balowski]