Salahuddin Wahid (11 September 1942 – 2 February 2020), colloquially known as Gus Solah, was an Indonesian Islamic scholar and politician. He originated from a Nahdlatul Ulama family, and was the younger brother of former Indonesian president Abdurrahman Wahid. During the 2004 Indonesian presidential election, he became the running mate to Wiranto, though the pair lost the election.
1 Early life and family
Early life and family
Salahuddin Wahid was born in Jombang, in what is today East Java, on 11 September 1942. His father was Wahid Hasyim, and his grandfather was Hasyim Asy'ari, the founder of Nahdlatul Ulama (NU). He was educated in public schools in Jakarta, graduating from SMPN 1 Cikini and SMAN 1 Jakarta, before obtaining a degree in architecture from the Bandung Institute of Technology.
He married Farida, daughter of former Minister of Religious Affairs Saifuddin Zuhri, in 1968. The couple have three children.
After graduating from his studies, Wahid worked in architecture and had leadership positions in construction companies, but stopped following the Asian financial crisis. Between 1998 and 1999, Wahid served in the People's Consultative Assembly. Following the fall of Suharto, multiple political parties were established which were related to NU, including the National Awakening Party (PKB) and the Ummat Awakening Party. Salahuddin's brother and later president Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur) joined PKB, while Wahid joined PKU. The two engaged in public debates published by the newspaper Media Indonesia during October of 1998, on the topic of their father's vision for the country. Gus Dur argued that Hasyim supported Pancasila, while Wahid argued that he supported a state based on Islam. Wahid left PKU in September 1999.
In 1999, Wahid ran for the chairmanship of NU. He placed third in the first round of voting, but withdrew from the second round. Later, in 2002 he became the vice chair of the National Commission on Human Rights (KOMNAS HAM). In the organization, he led a team investigating Wiranto for human rights violations in East Timor following the 1999 independence referendum, which eventually released a conclusion absolving Wiranto's responsibility on significant violations. He also led the fact-seeking teams related to human rights violations during the May 1998 riots and in the Buru camps.
Wiranto later selected Wahid as his running mate in the 2004 Indonesian presidential election. Wahid represented PKB, which was in coalition with Golkar, Wiranto's supporting party. Wahid resigned from NU's central committee and KOMNAS HAM in order to participate in the election. The pair won 22.15 percent of the votes and were eliminated, with Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Jusuf Kalla eventually winning in the run-off vote.
Starting in 2006, Wahid became the caretaker of the Tebuireng pesantren, which was founded by his grandfather.
Wahid has called for NU to avoid politics. He has also called for the protection of Ahmadiyya followers – who are persecuted in Indonesia – and requested that the Indonesian state not use the Indonesian Ulema Council's fatwas as a point of reference. However, Wahid has also stated that a disbandment of Ahmadiyya organizations should be done through legal means.
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