March 8, 2023
JAKARTA – The Indonesian Mosque Council (DMI) has ordered a ban against politicians using mosques and other places of worship under its watch as sites for their campaign in the upcoming presidential and legislative elections.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, deputy chairman of DMI Syafrudin said that the order came directly from the organization’s chairman and former vice president Jusuf Kalla.
“Caretakers of mosques are banned from giving the stage to political figures in the 2024 general election,” Syafrudin was quoted by Antara as saying.
The decision was approved during a national meeting held in the organization’s headquarters in Central Jakarta.
Another decision approved during the meeting was the nomination of head of the National Intelligence Agency (BIN) Budi Gunawan as head of the organization’s council of experts.
Syafrudin said that the organization’s leadership had filed a request to Budi about the nomination.
Experts have predicted that identity politics, especially one based on religious affiliation, would be used as an electoral strategy in the 2024 general elections.
A number of politicians and political parties have intended to use identity politics to gain votes including the newly established Ummah Party.
“We will say it out loud, ‘yes, we are the Ummah Party, and we are [the manifestation of] identity politics,’” party chairman Ridho Rahmadi said in a speech.