A New Start?
So the election has been and gone, but not for all. A number of polling stations hadn't received the ballot papers on time and others received the wrong ones. Re-runs have also to be held in a number of places as the number of punched ballot papers was more than the number of registered voters. However, the re-runs aren't that successful. As stated in the Jakarta Post, in one village on Madura Island "only 80% of illegible voters attended the polling station." Only 80%?? Illegible??
And pity the poor prisoner - unlike in the U.K., political prisoners have political rights here - who left his ballot sheet blank. In the pre-election trial runs, pictures of fruits, rather than fruitcakes, represented the political parties to be stabbed. The poor fellow had decided to vote for the Pineapple Party.
Still, we are going to see some changes. Not in the waiting for yonks for the final results, but in the diminishing of the votes for the 'establishment'. Here in Jakarta, the Prosperous Justice Party, supposedly a clean party, look to take about 20% of the vote. This is the party which gave out the most T-shirts and caused the biggest traffic jam with their rally. Also, the Democratic Party may take 10% or more because its leader is the former Security Minister, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who fell out with Megawati on the eve of the election.
Women like his charisma. A bit like Paul Newman, I suppose, which makes me Robert Redford. Or Walter Mattau.
Anyway, if there's a shift in the make-up of the Jakarta City Council, we may yet see something done to improve living conditions. I rode up and down Jl. Sudhirman today on the TransJakarta Busway. And very nice it was too. I did have to stand, but the buses were clean, air-conditioned and fast. Ya, boo and sucks to those stuck in the jams alongside us.
But trying to get to my highrise destinations once I was off the buses proved the usual nightmare. I'm convinced that a major cause of the traffic jams is that the population have purchased cars and motorbikes because it is literally impossible to walk anywhere. I don't have the vote here, but I'd certainly support any candidate who promised to pedestrianise the outer pavements (sidewalks to my American readers).
So, here's to a fresh start and a renewal of civic pride, or whatever it's called.
And here's to a fresh start to my computer which I now have to reformat, again. And that's another cross I have to bear.