Monday, April 13, 2009
Five Exciting Days in INDONESIA
My wife and I spent five exciting days in central Java during the recent elections.
We were there from Wednesday to Sunday, visiting Yogyakarta and Jepara.
Some friends were also there but they decided to return to Malaysia on the eve of the Indonesian elections as they were worried about possible disturbances.
The elections campaign was quite unlike in Malaysia and I suggest that the Indonesia has made giant strides towards democracy.
If they travel on the same path I daresay in about 10 years they will become a more progressive nation than Malaysia.
We actually observed the voting process from about 50 meters and we could the atmosphere was calm and peaceful. In fact we hardly saw election posters and other paraphanelia - maybe that HK supplier who got cheated by the BN has gone out of business?
Just some brief notes on how Indonesia is one up on Malaysia:
1.They use indelible ink.
2.Overseas voters in major cities do get to cast their ballot.
3.MSM is not so biased as in Malaysia.
On Easter Sunday, there was a TV broadcast on a Christain preacher who was giving a long sermon in a large hall. The only glimpse we get of churches on Malaysian TV is perhaps 30 seconds about a news item.
We managed to visit Borubodur world heritage site. The only complaint is that we paid the foreign tourist rate that is 10 times more than the locals!
My last visit to Indonesia was about 6 years ago and I must say I enjoyed this trip much more.
Photo: that's me trying to do a "Samson" in Prambanan temple