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Kaesang Pangarep appointed chairman of Indonesian Solidarity Party

Jakarta Globe - September 25, 2023

Mita Amalia Hapsari, Jakarta – Kaesang Pangarep, the youngest son of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo, was unanimously appointed as the chairman of the Indonesian Solidarity Party (PSI) during an internal congress in Jakarta on Monday evening.

This development occurred just two days after Kaesang officially became a member of the party, which aims to secure seats in the House of Representatives for the first time in the upcoming general elections.

"Kaesang Pangarep has been appointed as chairman of the Indonesian Solidarity Party for the 2023-2028 period, effective immediately. The decision is subject to review according to the party's guidelines," announced PSI founder Grace Natalie during the gathering at Jakarta Theater.

Kaesang reiterated his motivation to join the relatively new party, which made its debut in the 2019 elections, saying its predominantly youthful support base is particularly appealing to him.

"I'm confident that the upcoming tides will be on our side – the youths," Kaesang said in his acceptance speech. He expressed gratitude for the trust placed in him to lead the party shortly after becoming a new member. He also made a special mention of his predecessor, Giring Ganesha, who voluntarily stepped aside for him.

During the gathering, PSI co-founder Raja Juli Antoni was appointed as secretary-general.

Kaesang's decision to join PSI has sparked controversy, as his father and older brother, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, are both affiliated with the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P).

In the 2019 elections, PSI fell short of the 4 percent popular vote threshold required to win a House seat. However, the party did secure seats in local legislative councils, particularly in major cities like Jakarta and Medan.

Kaesang, previously recognized as a restaurant businessman, said earlier that his family supports his decision to engage in politics, viewing it as the first step in his political career with PSI, with the shared aim of strengthening Indonesia.

The 28-year-old stressed the importance of youth involvement in elections, aligning with PSI's stance that the younger generation should actively participate in shaping the nation's future.

"The younger generation has often played a passive role in elections. We want them to be more active because the future of our nation rests in their hands," Kaesang said.

He drew a comparison between PSI and the Move Forward Party, which achieved electoral success in Thailand.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/kaesang-pangarep-appointed-chairman-of-indonesian-solidarity-part