Statement of President of the Republic of Indonesia Regarding Students’ Criticism, 29 June 2021, the Merdeka Palace, Jakarta
What can you say on the students’ poster that criticizes you?
President Joko Widodo:
It is nothing new. I was once called slow, sluggish, confused. Some people called me an authoritarian leader, while the other called me ‘a lame duck’, ‘Bapak Bipang/ the Father of Roasted Pork’, and the latest criticism is ‘The King of Lip Service’.
I think that is how the students express themselves and since Indonesia is a democratic country they are allowed to voice criticism and the university should not impede their expressions. Nevertheless, we must bear in mind that we have to uphold the culture of manner and politeness. I think it is not something serious. The students perhaps are learning to express their opinions. The most important thing for us right now is to focus on handling COVID-19.
Thank you, Sir. (RAS/EP)