Prabowo, now a four-star general

JAKARTA, Feb 28: Indonesian Defence Minister and presidential hopeful Prabowo Subianto was awarded the rank of four-star honorary general by President Joko Widodo today.

The ceremony took place during the Indonesian National Armed Forces (TNI)-Indonesian National Police event at TNI headquarters in Cilangkap, East Jakarta.

Widodo told reporters that the star award had been verified by the Council of Honours and Decorations, in accordance with Law Number 20 of 2009.

He stressed that the award should have been presented two years ago, acknowledging Prabowo’s contributions to the defence sector and the country’s progress.

Prabowo retired as commander of the Indonesian Army Strategic Command with the rank of Lieutenant-General during the presidency of BJ Habibie on Nov 22, 1998.

Other notable figures who had received the honorary rank of TNI General include the sixth president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan.