||Born in Tegal, Central Java, on 20th September 1942 and a graduate of the National Military Academy in 1965, Ma'ruf holds a degree in management from the Open University in Jakarta. Currently he is a central executive board member of the Democratic Party; the party that nominated Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as president. Ma'ruf was the Indonesian ambassador to Vietnam from 1997 to 2000 after serving as the chief of staff of the Siliwangi military command in West Java, the Udayana military command in Bali and the Diponegoro military command in Central Java. It is believed Ma'ruf was dismissed from the TNI for opposing the July 1996 Soeharto-ordered TNI takeover of the headquarters of Megawati Soekarnoputri's Indonesian Democratic Party (PDI) in which many PDI cadre were killed, injured or disappeared never to be seen again. (The new head of the National Intelligence Agency (BIN), Maj. Gen (ret.) Syamsir Siregar also opposed the July 1996 attack on the PDI HQ and resigned from the TNI shortly afterwards).