Indonesians have been freed from the shackles of work on April 17, as President Joko Widodo yesterday passed a decree mandating that election day will be a public holiday to encourage voter turnout.
President Jokowi is running for a second term this year and facing off against Prabowo Subianto, his sole challenger in the 2014 election. This year’s election is also the first in history to combine the presidential election with legislative elections.
Public holidays for elections in Indonesia are generally announced shortly before the event. For example, the government only announced a holiday for last year’s nationwide regional elections a week before people went to the polls.
And with a day off on April 17, those who want to give themselves a super long weekend that week can do so by taking Thursday, April 18 off as April 19 is a public holiday for Good Friday anyway.