Statement of President of the Republic of Indonesia at the Istighosah of the Melayu – Banjar Community in Tabalong Regency, South Kalimantan Province, March 17, 2023

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 17 Maret 2023
Category: Press Statement @en
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Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
Bismillahirrahmanirrahim,
[An Islamic chant praising the Prophet].

Distinguished Ministers of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet including Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung;

Distinguished Islamic religious leaders in attendance (Tuan Guru, Habib, Kiai, Ulema);

Distinguished Head of Committee of the Istighosah (Mass Prayer) K. H. Syarbani Haira and all ranks of the committee;

Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, people of Tabalong regency and South Kalimantan province.

Alhamdulillah, we are all here today to attend the mass prayer of Melayu-Banjar community. I am delighted to be able to meet the Melayu-Banjar community on this occasion.  I would like to express my gratitude to Melayu-Banjar community who have upheld the religious, eastern values. I also would like to express my gratitude for the enthusiasm of the people in Tabalong regency.

After performing dawn prayer, I went here. Someone told me, “A huge crow have gathered at the location, Sir.” Today’s rain also means good luck. I also would like to express my gratitude for the enthusiasm of Melayu-Banjar community who have been protecting and preserving its traditional values as well as developing values of Islam rahmatan lil ‘alamin (blessing for the universe).

We have to be proud as a nation and we have to realize that our nation, Indonesia, is a great nation. Our current population reached 280 million people who live on the 17,000 islands of our country. We also have various ethnicities, customs, traditions, and religions.

Just take a look at our languages. We have more than 1,300 different regional languages. I have flown from Aceh to Papua. I tried to see how far Indonesia is, from Aceh to Papua. How long does it take to fly? Nine hours and 15 minutes. If you fly from London to Istanbul, you will fly through seven countries. This means how vast this country is. We have to realize it so that we are all proud of our country, Indonesia. And our diversity is bound by the spirit of unity in diversity, bound by the national consensus of Pancasila, the 1945 Constitution, the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia, and Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (Unity in Diversity).

Who knows Pancasila (the five principles)? Please come up the front.

Ahmad Fajri (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

 President Joko Widodo

Waalaikumsalam warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

 Ahmad Fajri (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

My name is Ahmad Fajri

President Joko Widodo

What can I call you?

Ahmad Fajri (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Fajri, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

What are the five principles of Pancasila? 

Ahmad Fajri (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Pancasila. First, belief in the one and only God. Second, just and civilized humanity. Third, the unity of Indonesia. Fourth, democracy guided by the inner wisdom in the unanimity arising out of deliberations among representatives. Fifth, social justice for the whole of the people of Indonesia

President Joko Widodo

Amazing. Tabalong regency is amazing. Please back to the seat and you will receive a bicycle. Bring the bicycle here. No problem, let it be there. You can back to your seat.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I call on all of us to  strengthen the spirit of ukhuwah islamiyah (Islamic brotherhood), ukhuwah wathaniyah (national brotherhood), and ukhuwah insaniyah (humanitarian brotherhood) so that we can live in harmony. Considering that we were created with diverse ethnicities, traditions, races, religions, we have to live in harmony. I also hope that we can live together side by side, live in harmony, and together strive with a spirit of mutual cooperation to advance our country.

I also would like to express my appreciation for the support given by the Malay-Banjar community on the development of the Nusantara Capital (IKN). I hope that the Malay-Banjar community will become the host of their own land, play an active role, and become an important part of the history of the establishment of the Nusantara Capital. Where is the IKN located? Okay, you can come up the front.

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

President Joko Widodo

Waalaikumsalam. What’s your name?

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

My name is Helda Anisa, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

What can I call you?

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Helda, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

Are you from Tabalong?

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Yes, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

Where is the IKN located?

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

It is located in East Kalimantan province, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

Where in Kalimantan?

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

In East Kalimantan province, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

Is she right?

All Participants

Yes.

President Joko Widodo

Okay, thank you. Please back to your seat.

Helda Anisa (Participant of the Mass Prayer)

Can I have the bicycle, Sir? (Laughing)

President Joko Widodo  

Do we still have the bike? If we do, give it to her. If not, I will deliver it then. Oh, there is still a bike. You have to know that many people would like to trade this bike for a car because it has a written label  “Bike from President Jokowi”. It’s not the bike itself that is expensive, it’s the label. Here, the bike is yours.

Once again, I would like to express my utmost gratitude to the Malay-Banjar community for the support in the development of the IKN. We have started the development by building infrastructure, State Palace, and government buildings. However, we don’t want to just move the physical aspect of it, but we want to build a new way of working. How the Government serves the people? A new way of working; providing quick and well services. And secondly, we also want to change our mindset so that we can compete with other countries. It’s not that easy. Countries are competing with others. They are fighting for investment. Once again, the competition is not that easy.

 Alhamdulillah, in 2022 our economic growth increased by 5.3 percent, while other countries were fighting against COVID-19. Last December, the PPKM policy has been revoked. I noticed that all of you here are not wearing face masks. Almost three years we were wearing face masks. All people have received two or three doses of vaccine. I have received four doses.

Once again, competition among countries is not that easy. Therefore, if we do not come up with new ways of working and a new mindset to compete, we will lose and continue to be a developing country.

Many countries in Latin America and Asian countries have only remained developing countries for more than 50 or even 70 years because they are not willing to change themselves, improve their human resources by implementing new ways of working, performing work hard, and changing their mindset. That is what we need in the future. Therefore, young people must be willing to change and work hard because you will all compete with human resources from other countries. But, when I saw the answer earlier, who were there? Fajri and Helda [thumbs up]. I’m not praising them, I’m just [giving a thumbs up]. Great. Answering it firmly, clearly, and getting a bike.

In addition to the IKN, our country has 17 thousand islands with 280 million population. However, 56 percent of our population live in Java island. It means that 150 million people live in Java island. 58 percent of GDP, money circulation is in Java island. What about other islands?

Therefore, it is necessary to carry out equitable development, not Java-centric but Indonesia-centric. Why is infrastructure being built so much outside of Java? It’s because of equal distribution in order to encourage GDP in other islands outside Java island. It aims to realize social justice for all Indonesian people as well as the IKN development.

Furthermore, the idea has actually been around for a very long time ago since the 1960s. President Soekarno at that time had already planned to move the capital to Kalimantan, but it was not realized. The next president also planned to build a new capital, but it was not realized. Now, we are executing it and it has already started. Insyaallah, it may be completed in 10 or 15 years, and our capital will be in Nusantara.

My question is…. It’s a difficult question. Considering that the capital will be relocated, new centers of economic growth outside Java island will be boosted. Do you all agree with me?

All participants

Agree.

President Joko Widodo  

My question is.. Why do we relocate the capital?

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

Excuse me.

President Joko Widodo

Please, introduce yourself.

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

Thank you, Mr. President Jokowi for having me.

President Joko Widodo

What’s your name?

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

My name is Yulia, Sir.

President Joko Widodo

Okay, what is the answer, Mrs. Yulia?

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

The reason is the IKN will be located in the golden triangle between South Kalimantan province, East Kalimantan province, and Central Kalimantan province. There are a lot of population in Jakarta (current capital) so that the capital must be relocated. It is also because Kalimantan is still covered by a lot of forest. Am I right, Sir? And Kalimantan has also great potential.

President Joko Widodo

Is she right?

All participants

Yes…

President Joko Widodo

Yes, she is right. We want an even population distribution considering that our population is already huge.

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

Indeed.

President Joko Widodo

Your answer is right, Mrs. Yulia.

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

Thank you, Mr. President.

President Joko Widodo

I know it is hard to answer the question when you come up the front.

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

No, no. It is not that hard.

President Joko Widodo

Okay, please back to your seat. Thank you.

Yulia (Participant of Mass Prayer)

Don’t forget the bike, Mr. President.

President Joko Widodo

Oh, I see. You can bring the bike.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I invite all of us to pray together, strive together, both physically and spiritually, do our best in order to realize the development of the Nusantara capital as the gateway to accelerate development on the island of Kalimantan. Also, I ask for the blessings of Allah the Almighty God to always guide and facilitate us. And I ask all Islamic religious leaders as well as all Malay-Banjar community to pray for our nation.

That concludes my speech on this auspicious occasion.

I thank you.

Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

(AP/LW)

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