Dubai: Indonesians in the UAE displayed their patriotic fervour during the celebrations marking the 77th Independence Day of the Republic of Indonesia on Wednesday.
The Indonesian missions in the UAE were clad in red and white — the national colours of the Southeast Asian country — as Indonesian community members and leaders attended the flag hoisting and official ceremonies, where Indonesian diplomats exhorted their countrymen to “continue nurturing their spirit of being Indonesians.” They also recollected the sacrifices of their forefathers that culminated in the proclamation of Indonesian independence from Dutch colonial rule on August 17, 1945.
“Every year, we carry out a series of activities to commemorate the independence of the Republic of Indonesia as an effort to instill nationalism and love for the homeland among Indonesian citizens who are residing in the UAE. We also held several activities to promote our culture, products, and businesses,” Indonesian Ambassador to the UAE Husin Bagis told Gulf News.
“It is always important for us to nurture our spirit of being Indonesian. We want to keep the Indonesian values of diversity, solidarity, and unity as a nation. I encourage all Indonesians in the UAE to continuously promote those values and contribute to the local community like their own family,” added Indonesian Consul General K. Candra Negara.
A message from Indonesian President Joko Widodo was also read on Wednesday, where he said: “We (Indonesians) must always remain vigilant, cautious, and alert. Crisis after crisis still haunts the world. World geopolitics threatens regional security. We must always ‘Eling lan Waspodo’, must be mindful and vigilant. We must always be careful in taking actions. We must always be careful in making decisions. I reiterate that the nation’s grand agenda must not stop. Great efforts must continue to be made.”
Meanwhile, prior to the main celebration on Wednesday, the Indonesian Embassy organised various events in the lead up to the Independence Day event. They also organised a sportsfest, including badminton, table tennis, bowling and chess. They organised a business webinar, Indonesian Film Week, and a food festival titled ‘Indonesia Spice Up the World’ at Lulu Mushrif
For its part, the Indonesian Consulate in Dubai organised a blood donation campaign in collaboration with Dubai Health Authority on Wednesday.