Zulkieflimansyah & Marissa Haque

Oct 14th, 2006, in News, by

The gubernatorial election for Banten province in western Java is dominated by the pair of Zulkieflimansyah and former actress Marissa Haque.

The six-year old province of Banten, which was split off from West Java and has as its capital the city of Serang, will hold elections for governor and deputy governor on 26th November 2006. The race, in terms of media coverage at any rate, seems to be dominated by the pair of Zulkieflimansyah and Marissa Haque, they being the candidates of both the obscure Partai Syarikat Islam and the Partai Keadilan Sejahtera (PKS).

Marissa Haque
Marissa Haque, before and after.

For celebrity obsessed Indonesians the figure of Marissa Haque represents the main reason why the election has received so much media coverage of late. Originally a lawyer and part time model, and then a well known actress, starring in various movies, such as “Kamp tawanan wanita” (1983), Marisa entered politics in 2004 and became a parliamentary representative for West Java province, as part of a PDI-P ticket. This year however Haque acrimoniously left the secular oriented PDI-P and joined up with the Islamic PKS in order to be its candidate for vice-governor of Banten. She is married to actor Ikang Fawzi and they have twins.

Zulkieflimansyah, the head of the ticket, in speaking of Marissa’s celebrity status, says it is of great advantage in drawing crowds to campaign events. Normally, he says, people have to be paid to turn up at political rallies but Marissa’s star quality is attraction enough. He hopes that Marissa will bring in the votes of 50% of PDI-P supporters to his ticket.


Zulkieflimansyah himself is a rather young 34 years old and has excelled at scholarly pursuits, spending much time abroad studying, especially at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland in which place he attained a doctorate from the Department of Economics. While at Strathclyde “Bang” Zul headed the university’s Moslem Student Association.

He has also done study at a string of other places, including the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, the Institute for New Technology at Maastricht, Netherlands, the Department of Comparative Culture at Sophia University, Tokyo, Japan, the Science and Policy Research Unit at the University of Manchester in England, and the University of Dundee in Scotland.

Banten, says Zulkieflimansyah, is a poor, underdeveloped place, with few natural resources, and populated by people who frequently show through the look in their eyes that they are without hope. His main focus in campaigning has been to stress the need for accountablility and openness in the system of tendering projects, in battling corruption, while reassuring people that any changes made under an administration headed by him would not be sudden or extreme.

Zulkieflimansyah also hammers away at familiar PKS themes, that is, improving of access to education and health services. Preferably such things would be provided free of charge but he says this is likely impossible in Banten due to the colossal costs. Banten, under Zulkieflimansyah, would be safe for investors and creating jobs is one of his key priorities, he says. He also says the provincial government should be on better and more productive terms with the heads of the more than 2000 Islamic boarding schools in Banten.

On the role of the PKS in politics, or perhaps on why there is a need for a party with an explicitly Islamic focus, Zul says the PKS seeks to educate Muslims about Islam, and show them that being Muslim is not synonymous with poverty and ignorance, partly as a way of preventing the spread of extremism among the people and partly as a way of creating tolerance for differences among groups in society. Through education, he says, people will come to learn to respect differences in systems of belief.

Kompas has a page listing all stories related to the election at http://www.kompas.com/ver1/PilkadaBanten/.

20 Comments on “Zulkieflimansyah & Marissa Haque”

  1. Julita says:

    Sounds very, very, very good, I vote for Zulkieflimansyah. Oh, I hope people do not look at the cover of the book but the content, I also hope Zul will be doing as he said. Who knows Banten will be the one giving the correct example to other parts of Indonesia.

  2. Nona says:

    sory, i dont vote for man with two wife.

  3. Hassan says:

    i’d rather vote for a man with two, three, or even four wives than a man with only one wive but having 4 mistresses. 2 legally maried wives is much more dignified than one wive plus God knows how many extra marital affairs.

  4. Julita says:

    Two wives?????????????? Sorry, give me back my ballot.

  5. Anonymous_aloy says:

    Sorry, I’ll never vote a man with more than one wive.

    It tells you a lot about how low his views on women is. Taking advantage of an archaic law from a bygone era just because it’s legal is not dignified, it’s corrupt, and in this case very degrading.

    It’s an embarrasment to progressive minded, 21th century, moderate Muslims everywhere. It’s a shame too for all the disillusioned women who support him.

  6. Hassan says:

    why does Muslim women concern themselves too much on polygamy, while it’s the rise of adultery we should worry about. polygamy is a legal practice in Islamic law (the Quran did not prohibit it, given the maximum is four), while adultery is not.
    in fact, polygamy has it’s practical benefits in our society today (where there are more men than women) if compared with monogamy.

    for Muslims and non Muslims out there, open this Christian page to find out more: http://www.samchapman.f2s.com/ppractic.htm

  7. Ali says:

    Off topic, but this topic reminds me of my Junior High teacher.
    Her condescending comment on Ronald Reagan as the president of the U.S. at that time:

    “What kind of country is that, everyone can be a president. Even a movie star can be a president. Look at Indonesia, over here, only someone who fought for the country’s independence can make president.”

    God, she must have been an idiot.
    If anyone who fought for US independence ran for president in the 80s, he or she would have been 200+ years old.

  8. Molisan Tono says:

    having two wife is legal adultery according Islam. act of sins covered by religious term. what a sad and painful reality…

  9. Hassan says:

    legal adultery? no, it’s legal, period. adultery is having extra marital affairs. marrying more than one women is not an extra marital affair, because the men marry them. have you read my link tono? it’s a Christian website.

    if in the UK there are 1.2 million more women than men, imagine that numbers worldwide. there would be millions of women who will be unable to find a husband. and all we can say to them is: “don’t worry, not getting married for the rest of your live isn’t that bad!” yeah, really?

    how about if those millions of women who were unable to find a mate then decides to commit adultery to fulfill their biological needs?? imagine the high rate of adultery there would be if that happens..

    don’t just think philosophically, think practically.

  10. Julita says:

    Good try guys, there are other believe which allow more than one wife. This is practical for a husband, especially when one get older. The wives can work and earn money for him. Have you heard of wives going to the market selling their crops and husband doing cock fight. See!

  11. Hassan says:

    Julita: “The wives can work and earn money for him. Have you heard of wives going to the market selling their crops and husband doing cock fight” oh really? most men that have more than one wives are required tobe (and usually are) financially secure. so nice try with the ‘women slavery’ gimmick.

  12. Molisan Tono says:

    what practical to me is control sex drive. do you know how hard our government try to educate Indonesian people how to manage their sex drive? yes, government has failed but it is not of their fault… it’s the lack of how to control sex and birth rate.

    now, by that silly reason. you and your religion consider it’s a very best way and alternative to marry a man for second or third or even tenth wife. and hey, it’s legal….

    if that case so simple that is… than God from the very start… the ages of creation… He supposed to create Eve1… Eve2… Eve3… Eve4 and… so on.

  13. Julita says:

    Look into the world, women are treated worse than that, just selling crops in the market is nothing and as about men’s leisure habits is not the issue here, you can change as you wish golf, TV, bridge and their women working in the office.
    The issue is when polygamy in general becomes legal. The heart-ache it caused his wives and children, can he really give a good father’s figure to all those children he brought into the world(they sometime have problem with just one or two in the family). Where is “Till death do us part? And how about if the man find another pretty, poor(for excuse?), young woman. He might have to put away one of the four, will he let her go with 1/5 of his property or is it ‘Habis Manis Sepah Dibuang?” Heart-ache my friend, no love. If this is the case I hope that somebody like “Raden Ajeng Kartini’ (by this I don’t mean Indonesia but anywhere) be reborn.to help women.

  14. Molisan Tono says:

    funny though…. my fella Hassan is thinking backward.
    sometime, things in our ancestor past can’t be apply so simple in modern days… take a good example… when a person cought in his/ her act, found guilty, in those time… this person should be dead by stoning… can you apply that law now? can you simply say… this is according to Quran or what so ever?

    Quran or Bible is the ages of God’s law… modern day, there’s human law. simply follow the law dude… if the law failed… follow the other one. until there’s no law can justify… then you might have permit to do God’s law.

    according to my observation… your great prophet Mohammed is applying polygami to generate the promises of God. the same promise father Abraham has received from God. so i assume that ok in that time… but these days? hey, this world builded for human… not rabbit. stop breeding like rabbit.

  15. Hassan says:

    Molisan Tono: “Quran or Bible is the ages of God’s law”¦ modern day, there’s human law. simply follow the law dude”¦”

    well, where did your allegiance stands? to man made law, or God’s law? who do you think is the best law-maker, humans or your God? who can best understands justice, humans or your God? you need to answer those questions my friend. don’t answer them to me, but to your conscience.

    about the controlling sex drive, well as I had said that in the UK alone there are 1.2 million more women than men, imagine that numbers worldwide. there would be millions of women who will be unable to find a husband. should we say to them this?: “don’t worry, not getting married for the rest of your live isn’t that bad!”

    those women who could not get a husband should control their sex drive all their lives?? that’s not fair. how about if someone told you to do that? “no (legal) sex till you die!”

  16. indri says:

    Who is his second wife by the way? Men with more than one wife tend to be dishonest, because the requirement to be ‘adil’ amongst the wives is not easy for them. Quran says nobody is able to be ‘adil’ amongst the wives however hard they try. That’s why the Quran says that one wife is better. So: governor with one wife is better?

  17. Parvita says:

    It’s interesting to see how the subject of “Zul and Marissa” changes to poligamy. And it’s interesting to see Molisan Tono always can make any kind of discussion to corner Islam. Ck…Ck…Ck…

    Banten is a nice district and it is rich. I hope whoever wins will be able to make Banten powerful and beautiful. Somehow, I feel pessimistic about it but lets think positive that they are not just going to benefit themselves from being a governor. Ameeeennn….

  18. 100%secular says:

    Hi Guys,

    Do u know his second wife? she is a very prominent professor in very reputable university in well-advanced foreign country and, interestingly, ex-heartfelt feminist proponent that cessed to so as to be his second wife. How to say, then? God-damned Love is blind, man…. Can be not rationalized, then? so to say, kind of the mixed meeting of heart and mind. One can not pretend to be something that he/she could not afford. Just cheer-up, be happy, don’t be emotional and make a world better. It’s a 100% secular principle. Btw, is he committed to what is supposed to his ‘two legal married wifes’? If yes, he is at least a man of principle.

  19. Hera says:

    I vote for both of them , I prefer to build the Banten to be better province for people who live there in general , I concern with alot people who need the better leader more educated , strong basic life of fundamental , open minded , about the personal life it’s depend on the person , I just need Banten , people complain because they unhappy for they life ,

  20. Kaiejrt says:

    Wow. I love Marissa Haque, she is the most influential and remarkable Indonesia women in our town. Many people loved her so much. It is because she has the Indonesia sincerity where others don’t have.

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