Never Too Young | May 30, 2024

Path opens up for Kaesang to become Jakarta vice governor


They can’t keep getting away with it, right? Oh they can, and they will.

Also, kids, smoking’s bad, mmkay?




Dynasty Beckons

Budisatrio Djiwandono (Left) and Kaesang Pangarep (Right)

We’d seen the term “nepo baby” bandied around during the 2024 Presidential Election. From the winners’ perspective, if that strategy yielded victory, why not keep using the same playbook for the upcoming Pilkada (Regional Elections)?

Today, Gerindra (Great Indonesia Movement) party politician Sufmi Dasco Ahmad uploaded a poster on Instagram championing Budisatrio Djiwandono for the Jakarta gubernatorial seat, with Kaesang Pangarep as his running mate. Budisatrio is the nephew of President-elect and Gerindra Chairman Prabowo Subianto, while Kaesang is the youngest son of President Joko Widodo.

The pair is relatively youthful, with Budisatrio turning 43 in September and Kaesang, who is a newcomer in politics and yet managed to speed run his way to becoming PSI (Indonesian Solidarity Party) chairman last year, is only turning 30 next Christmas.

Initially, Kaesang wasn’t eligible to run for vice governor as he would still be one year short of the minimum age for the post by the time the election takes place on November 27. But a similar hurdle didn’t stop his brother before, and it’s not stopping him — the Supreme Court today ruled that the minimum age requirement applies at the time a regional official is sworn in, thereby paving the way for Kaesang or anyone else who turns 30 before 2025.

In any case, Kaesang has also been fancied for the mayoral posts in Bekasi and Depok. We’ll know more in the coming weeks and months as the powers that be scheme their little schemes to achieve victory in Jakarta and across Indonesia.

In Other News

  • In a major update on the PT Timah corruption case, authorities revealed a staggering financial loss of IDR 300 trillion and named a new suspect, a former high-ranking official from the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry. This intensifies the scrutiny on the state-owned tin mining company and highlights the pervasive corruption within Indonesia's energy sector.

  • A proposed revision to Indonesia's Police Law includes granting the police authority to conduct espionage and sabotage operations to preemptively thwart threats to national security. Critics, however, raise concerns about the implications for civil liberties and the need for stringent oversight to prevent misuse of these expanded powers by the police.

  • Security was tight at the Denpasar District Court as the trial for four Mexican nationals accused of shooting a Turkish citizen in an armed robbery in Bali kicked off. Amidst the heightened precautions, two of the defendants showed up in traditional sarongs.


3 kg gas canisters. Photo: Trade Ministry

  • Buyers must present their KTP (national ID cards) to purchase 3 kg gas canisters starting June 1. The subsidized canisters are meant for micro businesses and households, but misuse has long been rife.

  • KCIC has introduced the Frequent Whoosher Card to offer cost savings for regular passengers of Whoosh, the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed train. One card costs IDR 1.75 million, and holders are entitled to 10 trips. By comparison, a regular one-way Whoosh ticket costs IDR 250,000.

  • Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno yesterday recalled an egg crisis two Christmases ago in Labuan Bajo, which led to tourists throwing tantrums as they were deprived of their breakfast omelettes. Won’t somebody think of the tourists?

  • A trial run for Nusantara’s sky taxis is set to commence in June. Developed by South Korea, the air vehicles are battery powered and will have a flight range of 100 km. Weeee.

Everything Else

  • There’s nothing cool about smoking (and vaping, while we’re at it), and the sentiment is hopefully catching on among Indonesia’s youths. A recent study by the Health Ministry showed a significant decrease in the prevalence of smoking among youths aged 10-18, with rates dropping to 7.4% from 9.1% in 2018. It’s not all positive — one factor behind the decrease is the youth’s increasing preference for e-cigarettes.

  • COVID-19 is on the rise, again, but thankfully there have been no reported fatalities lately. The government reiterated today that jabs are still available, free of charge, for the elderly and the immunocompromised.

  • Monica Sembiring has been crowned Miss Indonesia 2024, becoming the first woman from North Sumatera to win the prestigious pageant. Monica will represent Indonesia at Miss World 2025.


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