Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan gave his speech on dozens of participants of the first-ever Jakarta International Literary Festival (JILF) in a gala dinner in the Great Hall, Jakarta City Hall Building, Monday (8/19).
" This is our honor as the host of this dinner, and for supporting the first literary festival"
The literary festival, which runs from August 20 to 24 at Taman Ismail Marzuki will be theme "PAGAR".
"This is our honor as the host of this dinner, and for supporting the first literary festival. I'm sure this festival is in line with our vision. We don't want to see this city as a physical infrastructure building, as people who live in it, shaping culture and civilization, and we want to see them in Jakarta. So this is my pleasure to welcome all of you to this important meeting," expressed Anies, as quoted by Jakarta PPID press release.
He then explained this moment held after the 74 years of independence brought the message of unity in diversity and stressed that several historic moments that shaped the Indonesian state have been done in Jakarta, including the declaration of the proclamation.
Jakarta has become central to the development of the nation of Indonesia. With a potential of more than 700 spoken languages and 400 ethnic groups, Indonesia has agreed to fight for unity amid diversity.
"That diversity had been made from birth, but unity was a joint decision. We agreed to create it in this country, especially in here (Jakarta). We've passed through a long journey to reach it and we expect the work of literacy, we together put a common platform to preserve and develop our unity," he explained.
He hoped that the festival can be a momentum to create a network between writers and Jakarta was ready to become a host for its future development and give the best service in developing networks, expressing their ideas and sharing creative work in the world.
"I also hope that you enjoy the historical places in this city that will take you on a journey of how Indonesia and Jakarta have transformed until now. Someday you can tell your story or experience in Jakarta, surely we really appreciate it," he uttered.
As for the information, the JILF will be filled with various literacy activities including conferences, symposiums, talk shows, evening reading, ecosystem literacy labs, exhibitions and book sales.
It will also feature a number of Asian and African authors, including Legodle Seganabeng (Bosnawa), Oliver Precht (German), Indian poet and queer activist Akhil Katyal, Malaysian writers and independent filmmakers Amir Muhammad and Faisal Tehrani, award-winning writer Shenaz Patel (Mauritius), Palestinian author Adania Shibli, Singaporean writers Clarissa Goenawan dan Sharlene Teo, Somali-British poet Momtaza Mehri, South African writer-journalist Zainab Priya Dala, Thailand’s Prabda Yoon, and Indonesia’s Zen Ha, Philippine writer Eliza Victoria and silent-film notable Ramon 'Bomen' Guillermo, Turkish poet Bejan Matu, Bostwana’s Legodile Seganabeng, Laurie Callahan (United State), Cypriot-born author Stephanos Stephanides, as well as 38 well-known Indonesian writers such as JJ Rizal, Saras Dewi, Aan Mansyur, Ben Sohib and Ade Putri Paramadita.