Asian Games stir Indonesia’s pride, boost Jokowi’s campaign

first_imgImproving Indonesia’s creaking infrastructure has been Jokowi’s signature policy — the Asian Games indirectly highlighted some of the progress — and he enters the campaign the clear but not unbeatable front-runner.If it’s any consolation for Prabowo, who was narrowly defeated by Jokowi in 2014, the games afterglow will fade and is unlikely to be a decisive factor when the world’s third largest democracy votes in April, analysts said.“I think Jokowi’s and Indonesia’s performance in the Asian Games will give the president a bit of a bump in the polls but I’m not sure it significantly changes his odds of re-election,” said Eurasia Group analyst Peter Mumford.“Any benefit from the Asian Games may have dissipated by then. But certainly doesn’t do him any harm,” he said.Jokowi, however, appears intent on extending its shelf life, announcing alongside the president of the International Olympic Committee on Saturday that because of the success of the Asian Games, Indonesia will bid for the 2032 Olympics.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next In another moment that riveted Indonesians, Jokowi was shown enthusiastically grooving to music blasting across the stadium, a stark contrast to the morbid formality of most Southeast Asian leaders.Haris said the games also positively highlighted ethnic and religious differences in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation with more than 260 million people, making it harder to exploit those divisions during the election campaign, he said.“The Indonesian people saw how the athletes are fighting for victory, for gold medals, and the winners are not only Muslim, but also of Chinese descent, Christian, Hindu and Buddhist,” Haris said. “This will certainly dampen the sectarian and ethnic issues used in the 2014 presidential elections.”Despite Jokowi’s prominence, Subianto wasn’t totally deprived of oxygen.As chairman of the Pencak Silat association— a local martial art included in these games — he was shown on national television presenting some of the 14 gold medals that Indonesia won in the discipline, and in a group hug with Jokowi and one of the winners.But he was also mocked online with a mercilessly effective meme that juxtaposed a recent image of a shirtless and flabby Subianto against the washboard abs of an Indonesian heartthrob who jubilantly tore off his shirt after winning gold in the men’s badminton singles.Young Indonesians make up 35-40 percent of voters and will play a “decisive” role in the 2019 presidential race, said Hugo Brennan, Asia analyst at Verisk Maplecroft, a business and political risk consultancy.“Jokowi’s motorcycle stunt during the opening ceremony was widely shared on social media and will have burnished his ‘cool credentials’ among this important constituency,” he said.The PR win comes less than a month after Jokowi unexpectedly chose a conservative cleric, Ma’ruf Amin, as his running mate, dismaying moderate and liberal supporters but likely neutralizing damaging criticism that he isn’t sufficiently Islamic.Most of his five-year term has been spent balancing the demands of his moderate base, powerful Islamic conservatives, a complicated parliamentary coalition and the military, which has never completely accepted its diminished role following the end of the Suharto dictatorship two decades ago. Jokowi was compared to Barack Obama when first elected in 2014, and he and his advisers have cultivated a “cool cred” around his presidency.That was evident two weeks ago in his cameo at the opening ceremony before a crowd of 40,000 and a national television audience.A slickly choreographed video showed Jokowi stuck in traffic — a humorous nod to one of Jakarta’s major challenges in hosting the games. He donned a black helmet and raced through the city’s backstreets on a motorbike to reach the stadium on time.Then the motorbike shown in the video sped into the stadium and its helmeted driver disappeared into a tunnel moments before the real Jokowi appeared in the VIP area to thunderous applause.It resembled part of the opening of the 2012 London Olympics, where Queen Elizabeth II and James Bond appeared to skydive into the stadium.ADVERTISEMENT DepEd’s Taal challenge: 30K students displaced FILE – In this Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, file photo, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, center, joins the crowd as he watches the men’s team badminton game between Indonesia and China at the 18th Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia. Indonesia’s hosting of the Asian Games and a record haul of gold medals has swelled national pride, providing a boost to the re-election campaign of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila, File)JAKARTA, Indonesia — Indonesia’s hosting of the Asian Games and a record haul of gold medals has swelled national pride, providing a boost to the re-election campaign of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo.The 2-week-long games ended Saturday with Indonesia fourth on the medal table behind China, Japan and South Korea. A good chunk of its 30 gold medals were in obscure sports held only at the Asian Games, and none was from swimming or athletics.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs MOST READ Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award LATEST STORIES Peza offers relief to ecozone firmscenter_img Gov’t in no rush to rescue animals in Taal Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Fajardo rues timing of injury Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. But for Indonesia, which has won only seven Olympic gold medals — all in badminton — it was a landmark haul that outdid its modest ambition of sneaking into the top 10.A well-received opening ceremony, an absence of major organizational problems, and Jokowi’s surprise announcement Saturday that Indonesia would bid for the 2032 Olympics have fueled feel-good nationalism that analysts say is likely to give Jokowi a lift in the polls heading to an April election.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’That would widen his already substantial lead over former general and ultranationalist politician Prabowo Subianto, Jokowi’s challenger for a second time.The games will “certainly have a positive impact on Jokowi’s electability,” said Syamsuddin Haris, a political analyst from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences. “The spectacular opening ceremony became a successful campaign for the incumbent, especially to attract swing voters and millennials whose numbers are very significant.” Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? 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MAJELLA COMES TO AID OF THOSE WITH STRESS IN DONEGAL

first_imgMajella O Donnell has come to the aid of people in her adopted county of Donegal to cope with stress.She is to officially launch the ‘Donegal Mind Wellness’, a charity which was founded by Majella in conjunction with volunteers and help from the HSE in Donegal.The charity aims to help people to deal with the ups and downs of everyday life, which may lead to stress, anxiety and depression, by showing them ways of dealing with these problems. Majella said since moving to Donegal in 2002 to join husband Daniel O’Donnell, she has grown to love the place and the people.“The Donegal people are very honest, genuine and hard working. Donegal is a remote county that has suffered more than its fair share from unemployment, depression and suicide.“My aim is to be able to help people throughout the county to help themselves be more positive and hopeful and to find ways to deal with everyday life which can be very tough especially for those who are isolated or living alone,” she said.Majella has previously spoken out about her own battle with depression and suicidal thoughts. Majella explains, ‘At the moment we are running a Stress Control Programme which is a practical six-week course that can teach ways to relieve stress in our lives.“The courses are funded by Donegal Mind Wellness and are free of charge to everyone. Our aim is to make Stress Control as accessible as possible to everyone throughout Donegal.’The launch of the Donegal Mind Wellness will take place in the Mount Errigal Hotel in Letterkenny on Monday next, December 15th at noon. MAJELLA COMES TO AID OF THOSE WITH STRESS IN DONEGAL was last modified: December 11th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalHSEMajella O’DonnellSUICIDElast_img read more