Weakness in the Jokowi Campaign Messsage

By N Mark Castro

prabowo campaign rally
Why hasn’t Jokowi left Prabowo to eat his dust?

Prior to the formal campaign trail, Governor Jokowi Widodo topped all ratings with his massive popularity. Several weeks later, we see that the entire contest is still a toss-up between two candidates. Never has an election excited so many yet too close to call between the two.

What Went Wrong

1. Mental Revolution – Jokowi’s team failed to capitalize on his popularity with so many conflicting messages. He believes the key to the country’s improvement depends on education.

So far, so good. The country does have a dearth of manpower in the managerial level, failing to compete in international standards, especially with the advent of ASEA integration.

Then his team suddenly proposes revamping the educational system by imposing 80% of the curriculum to delve in morals, ethics, and character building.

So you work so hard to send your child to any of the highly overpriced but less than competitive schools in the country only to be taught 80% of morals and ethics and character building and world peace.

80 per cent, really?

2. Who’s The Boss? – PDI-P and its vaunted political machinery continue to fail to dominate the campaign due to internal conflicts of strategies? They already produced less than impressive results in the recent legislative elections, failing to capitalize on the popularity of their presidential candidate.

Some are concerned that PDI-P iconic party leader Megawati continues to be a liability instead of an asset to Jokowi, opening opportunities for the Prabowo camp to level accusations of interference.

3. Attacking The Wrong Issue – the alleged Human Rights violations of Prabowo is a monster on its own that needs no push from the Jokowi camp; unfortunately, they thought it was a brilliant idea to bring it up.

Big mistake.

Prabowo’s alleged human rights violations were not a problem for PDI-P when he was Megawati’s VP candidate and now suddenly it is?

If initial electoral projections were correct, this campaign trail shouldn’t have been this close, but now the Prabowo campaign benefits from the missteps of the Jokowi campaign team.

It’s a toss up, really, as Indonesia decides in a few more days.

About Asmartrock

N. Mark Castro is the chief political communications strategist for PT AsiaLeads, a political and communications policy-making body based in Jakarta, Indonesia. He is also the Executive Director at the Southeast Asia Consulting Group, an investment advisory company assisting clients roll out their presence for the ASEAN Economic Integration in partnership with government. The views posted here are his own and do not in any way reflect the views of the companies he represents.

Posted on June 23, 2014, in General, Politics and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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