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Prabowo Subianto seals victory as Indonesia’s next leader after a top court rejects rivals’ appeals

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesia’s top court on Monday rejected appeals lodged by two losing presidential candidates who are demanding a revote, alleging widespread irregularities and fraud at the February polls.

The 5-to-3 majority decision by the eight-judge panel of the Constitutional Court rejected the arguments, saying the legal teams of the losing candidates had failed to prove allegations that Prabowo Subianto’s victory was the result of widespread fraud.

The Court “rejects the petitioner’s appeal entirely,” Constitutional Court Chief Justice Suhartoyo said Monday, after a panel of eight judges took a marathon six hours to publicly read its reasoning in turn on both separate appeals. The verdict cannot be appealed.

The General Elections Commission, known as KPU, had certified a landslide victory for president-elect Subianto, but his rivals, former Jakarta Gov. Anies Baswedan and former Central Java Gov. Ganjar Pranowo alleged that the victory had depended on large-scale fraud and widespread state interference.

They also alleged nepotism, challenging the candidacy of outgoing President Joko Widodo’s eldest son, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, as Subianto’s running mate.

Baswedan and Pranowo argued that Raka, 37, should have been disqualified because the minimum age for candidates is 40, and they asked the court to bar him from a revote. Before the election, Raka was granted a controversial exception to that requirement by the Constitutional Court, which was then led by Anwar Usman, Widodo’s brother-in-law. Usman was later forced to resign as chief justice for failing to recuse himself.

The case was decided by eight justices instead of the full nine-member court because Usman, who is still on the court as an associate