More Than 100 Indonesian Election Workers, Police Die of Exhaustion

Arys Aditya and Tassia Sipahutar
More Than 100 Indonesian Election Workers, Police Die of Exhaustion

(Bloomberg) -- The death from exhaustion of more than 100 Indonesian election workers and police officers during the world’s largest one-day vote has triggered calls for a review of the simultaneous presidential and legislative polls.

More than 7 million workers were deployed as almost 245,000 candidates vied for about 20,000 posts, according to the General Elections Commission. Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Wiranto said 139 officials were confirmed dead as of Wednesday, while the commission said more than 500 fell ill after the vote.

The country’s first simultaneous presidential and legislative elections on April 17 saw the participation of an estimated 81 percent of the 193 million eligible voters. Vote counting is still in progress, though unofficial quick counts showed incumbent Joko Widodo winning the race by about 10 percentage points.

The government will review the concurrent elections in the parliament to ensure the process is more efficient and effective, Minister of Home Affairs Tjahjo Kumolo said in a statement this week. The election commission plans to discuss separating the presidential and legislative elections with a lawmakers’ panel overseeing the rules and the government, CNN Indonesia reported, citing Viryan Azis, a commissioner.

Vice President Muhammad Jusuf Kalla, who called this year’s poll “the most complicated,” has also backed a review of the simultaneous elections to ease the burden on officials, according to Detik.com.

(Updates death toll in second paragraph.)

To contact the reporters on this story: Arys Aditya in Jakarta at aaditya5@bloomberg.net;Tassia Sipahutar in Jakarta at ssipahutar@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at rpollard2@bloomberg.net, Thomas Kutty Abraham

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