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1.3 million Al-Maidah tour participants to monitor runoff election

Jakarta Post - April 15, 2017

Callistasia Anggun Wijaya, Jakarta Tamasya Al-Maidah (Al-Maidah Tour) organizer Ansufri Idrus Sambo said on Friday it expected 1.3 million people would join the program, in which they would be deployed to guard 13,032 polling stations across Jakarta during the runoff election slated for April 19.

One polling station would be observed by 100 people whose data had been gathered by the organizer through the Al Maidah Tour mobile application, he said.

"We target that each polling station could be monitored by 100 Muslims. Insya Allah [God willing], 1.3 million people will participate [in this program]," Ansufri said at Al Ittihaad Mosque on Jl. Tebet Mas Indah I, Tebet, South Jakarta.

Apart from monitoring the voting process to prevent any fraud, tour participants would move to encourage Muslim voters not to hesitate to exercise their voting rights.

Therefore, Ansufri said, it was expected this activity could lead to a fair and democratic election process in Jakarta.

Al Maidah Tour is named after a verse in the Al Quran that is often used by conservative Muslim political groups to urge Muslims not to vote for political candidates of different faiths.

The campaign team of Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama, who is a Christian of Chinese descent, has voiced its concern about the program. It says the program may intimidate voters who want to vote for the incumbent and his running mate, Djarot Saiful Hidayat.

Ansufri said the organizer had requested all tour participants to maintain public order and to keep security and peace at polling stations. It would also coordinate with police personnel and polling station officers on Election Day. (ebf)

Source: http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2017/04/15/1-3-million-al-maidah-tour-participants-to-monitor-runoff-election.html.

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