Thursday, 17 October 2019

Balinese Call for Unity Ahead of Friday`s Rally

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  • TEMPO/Dhemas Reviyanto

    TEMPO/Dhemas Reviyanto

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Thousands of Balinese from the military, police, the local government, mass organizations and students joined a pro-pluralism social event dubbed “Nusantara Bersatu” (Unity of the Archipelago) at Puputan Margarana Field in Renon, Denpasar, on Wednesday, November 30, 2016. People joined the event by giving speech, reading poems, performing joint prayers and traditional dance.

    Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika, one of the speakers in the event, said that the gathering may help the people to uphold Indonesian national ideology of Pancasila and the motto of Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (Unity in Diversity). “We have to make commitment to uphold and implement them to keep the nation on track,” he said.

    The interfaith communal prayer was led by leaders of Confucian, Buddhist, Christian, Catholic, Muslim and Hindu communities. “The joint prayer shows that we recognize our differences but together we maintain harmony,” said the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) Bali chapter KH Taufik As’adi after the event. Interreligious relations in Bali have been uninterrupted and harmony is well-maintained, according to him.

    Pressed on the planned December 2 rally, popularly known as the 212 movement, to be held in Jakarta, Taufik said that he has no problem with it so long as it is held peacefully and maintain the dignity of Islam.

    On Ahok’s wrongdoing, he suggested that he would wait court’s decision before any statement. “I’m not a judge, not an interpreter [of the Koran], I’m not qualified to opine on it,” he said. On the MUI Fatwa, he said that it was made based on interpretation of certain individuals.

    Bali Police chief Insp. Gen. Sugeng Priyanto asserted that the 212 movement will not affect security in Bali. “We continue to monitor it but there has yet to be any sign of security threat in Bali,” he said. Based on the agreement between Bali Police chief and community leaders, Muslim organizations, Sugen said that Bali will not send anyone to participate in the event. However, he will not prevent Balinese from joining it.