THE WORDS THAT ENDED AN ERA - Resignation of President Suharto
'In view of the situation, I find it difficult to carry out my duty as the country's ruler and to push ahead with the nation's development.
Based on Article Eight of the 1945 constitution, and having taken into consideration the views of leaders of the House of Representatives and its factions, I have decided to step down from office as the president of Indonesia, effective today, Thursday, May 21, 1998, as I read this statement.
My resignation from the office of the president of the Republic of Indonesia is also conveyed to the leaders of the House of Representatives, who are also the leaders of the People's Consultative Assembly, at this gathering.
As Article Eight of the 1945 constitution lays out, the vice-president, Professor Dr B. J. Habibie, will carry out the remainder of the presidential term from 1998-2003.
I thank the people for their help and support during my leadership of this country and I beg forgiveness for any mistakes and shortcomings and ask that the people will continue to believe in Pancasila [the state ideology] and the 1945 constitution.'