Widodo wins Indonesian presidency as rival withdraws | News | DW | 22.07.2014
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Widodo wins Indonesian presidency as rival withdraws

Indonesia's election commission has announced Joko Widodo as winner of this month's presidential polls. Hours before the finalized results, rival runner Prabowo Subianto withdrew from the race, claiming electoral fraud.

Jakarta governor Joko Widodo, popularly nicknamed "Widodo," claimed just over 53 percent of the votes, according to the final count on Tuesday. Voter turnout was over 70 percent, with almost 133 million valid ballots cast in total across the giant archipelago.

Wahlen Vorbereitung Jakarta 21.7.

Police were out in force in Jakarta after a heated election

The results largely corroborated the unofficial "quick counts" released after the July 9 election, most of which gave Jokowi a slim lead of up to 5 percent.

After a tense election campaign, Jokowi had called on his supporters to stay home in the case of a victory on Tuesday - to avoid potential clashes with supporters of his main rival, former general Prabowo Subianto. Jakarta police mobilized in force on Tuesday anticipating possible clashes.

Rival quits at last second

Subianto withdrew from Indonesia's presidential election process hours before the final results, citing widespread fraud.

Wahlkampfveranstaltung des indonesischen Präsidentschaftskandidaten Prabowo Subianto

Prabowo Subianto said he did not accept, but would not appeal, the results

"We reject the 2014 presidential election that was legally flawed, and therefore we withdraw from the ongoing process," he said in the capital Jakarta. Prabowo said complaints from his camp about "massive, structural and systematic cheating" were ignored by officials.

"We have found instances of electoral fraud involving organizers that make this election unfair," he said, before urging his supporters to remain calm. "We will base our struggle on the constitution and laws."

Prabowo had previously called on the election commission to stop the counting process until all allegations of electoral fraud were investigated.

Prabowo's withdrawal could open him up to prosecution: candidates agree not to withdraw once they have signed up to run for the presidency. Under Indonesian election laws, pulling out of the race can theoretically be punished by up to five years in jail and a fine of up to 50 billion rupiah (3.18 million euros, $4.31 million).

msh/dr (AFP, AP, dpa)