Partai Persatuan Pembangunan Conference

Jul 11th, 2006, in News, by

News from the national conference of the Partai Persatuan Pembangunan, PPP, United Development Party.

The conference, held over 8-9 July, saw some interesting items of note for watchers of Islamic politics in Indonesia, some of them seemingly contradictory.

Abu Bakar Bashir

There have been some reports recently that the convicted terrorist was being courted by Islamically based parties such as the PPP, Partai Persatuan Pembangunan (United Development Party). It appears that the leader of the central Java branch of the PPP, Ahmad Thoyfoer, once met Bashir and made overtures to him.

After he was freed I had the opportunity to worship with Ba’asyir. He said that his struggle was for the application of Islamic law. It’s the same with us, so I invited him to join the PPP.
(Setelah bebas, saya berkesempatan bersilaturahmi dengan Ustad Ba’asyir. Beliau menyatakan perjuangannya adalah menegakkan syariat Islam. Sama seperti kita. Karena itu, saya undang beliau ke PPP.)

Ahmad Thoyfoer said this while speaking to the national conference of the PPP in Semarang, central Java, a gathering in which Bashir had been invited to attend. At the mention of his name many of the assembled party faithful rose from their seats and looked about for Bashir, but, unable to locate him, returned to their former positions with crestfallen expressions to be seen on their faces, Detik says.

Bashir however, who was released from jail on June 14th after serving a two and a half year term, including a sentence for involvement in the first Bali bombings, claims that no such overture was made to him.

No party has ever asked me to join.
(Sejauh ini belum pernah satu partai pun yang meminta saya untuk bergabung.)

he said and added that he could not join any party that accepted the current democratic system. The only thing he could offer to them was his advice and guidance.

Islamophobia & PPP’s Mission

Meanwhile another candidate for the leadership of the PPP, Suryadharma Ali, said that Islamophobia in Indonesia must be combated

Suryadharma Ali, a candidate for the post of chairman of the party, which won 8% in the 2004 elections, said that the PPP had to be in the forefront of the movement against Islamophobia. Speaking at the national conference of the PPP in Semarang, 8th July, he declined to mention in what form Islamophobia existed in the country but added that the Islamic program had to be implemented in a practical way, rather than simply in the form of slogans.

This view was echoed by Ahmad Thoyfoer who said that the PPP had to wage war against Islamophobia.

We have to invite other parties and groups to reduce the tendency towards Islamophobia. If not Islam will continually be the object of attention, it has to be shown that Islam is not to be feared.
(Kita akan ajak partai atau kelompok lain untuk mengurangi gejala Islamophobia. Kalau tidak, Islam akan jadi obyek terus-menerus. Harus ditunjukkan bahwa Islam tidak perlu dikhawatirkan.)

he said no doubt referring to recent attempts by lawmakers and civil groups to have the issue of regional laws with Islamic overtones reviewed.

Ahmad Thoyfoer added that apart from the Islamophobia issue, and the freedom of Baasyir, the Yogyakarta earthquake was the third in the triumvirate of pressing issues for the PPP.

The earthquake has made us aware of our position as a community. God really does have a plan for mankind. We can only support each other to do it.
(Gempa membuat kita sadar posisi kita sebagai umat. Tuhan memang punya rencana lain terhadap manusia. Kita hanya bisa bahu-membahu menyelesaikannya.)

While current party leader and former vice president, Hamzah Haz, said that the PPP had to be able to display the distinctive features of the Islamic faith better than other Islamically based parties.

Suryadharma Ali went on to say that the perceived conflict between Islam and the state ideology Pancasila was not relevant anymore and discussion of it should be avoided as it represented a waste of time and energy.

For the PPP the matter is settled, there is no conflict between the two.
(Bagi PPP, semua itu bukan persoalan lagi dan sudah final. Tidak ada pertentangan diantara keduanya.)

Far better, he said, to focus on the problems of poverty and other social ills.

We can’t just be observers of poverty and unemployment so as to prevent the people from just being observers of this party as well.
(Kita tidak boleh lagi hanya sekedar jadi penonton kemiskinan atau pengangguran agar masyarakat tidak pula sekedar menonton parpol ini.)

He added that the PPP currently saw its voting strength as being among clerics, women, and youth, but that it had to reach out more to farmers, businessmen, and workers.

One Comment on “Partai Persatuan Pembangunan Conference”

  1. al-sabaliny says:

    One of the way that we not just be observers of poverty and unemployment is to do real work so hard to be trusted by the people

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