TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Vice Presidential Candidate Ma'ruf Amin responded to criticism against Indonesia's largest Islamic organization Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) for being involved in the politics of the 2019 election. Ma'ruf conveyed his statement following several NU people naming themselves NU Khittah Committee urged the organization to refrain from practical politics.
According to Ma'ruf, NU is an organization that has a political element within it. However, NU is not controlled by political interests, and its people are allowed to be involved in the political realm. "Even Gus Dur was a president," said the advisory council member of NU Central Board (Mustasyar PBNU).
A spokesman of NU Khittah Committee Choirul Anam, said that the party's rules of association and internal bylaws (AD/ART) stipulates clearly that NU management is prohibited to directly or indirectly join in practical politics.
Anam asserted that NU, which is currently led by Said Aqil Siradj, had too much involvement in politics by proposing Ma'ruf Amin, who was the supreme leader of PBNU, as a vice presidential candidate. Therefore, NU is considered to be under the control of one the political parties that support Jokowi - Ma'ruf, namely the National Awakening Party (PKB).
"NU is currently managed as a party," Anam said.
Meanwhile, the head of PBNU's legal board Robikin Emhas, said that Ma'ruf Amin did not violate NU's AD/ART despite his candidacy as Jokowi's running mate. Because, he added, Ma'ruf instantly resigned from his position. "That's clear," said Robikin to Tempo in Banjar, February 26, 2019.