The State Palace held a ceremony to celebrate the 71st Independence Day on Wednesday, giving the general public a chance to attend the flag-raising ceremony, with the majority of invitations to the event being sent to common people like in previous years.
This year’s celebration had a more festive atmosphere, in which Indonesia's first red-and-white flag, sewn by the late former first lady Fatmawati, was carried by traditional horse-drawn carriage, the Ki Jaga Raksa, from the National Monument (Monas) to the palace prior to the ceremony. This is the first time the State Palace has staged such a performance during the Independence Day celebration. It was reportedly President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's idea.
The parade began at 7 a.m., with the Ki Jaga Raksa carriage arriving at the State Palace at 8:43 a.m. The event continued with a colossal dance performance and choir performance by Resonanz, a children's choir that was named a grand prix winner at an international competition in Venice, Italy, last month
The national ceremony began at 10 a.m., following the schedule of when former president Sukarno read out the proclamation of independence on Aug.17, 1945.
Nilam Sukma Pawening, a student of state senior high school SMAN 67 Jakarta, a Paskibraka flag-raising team member, was chosen to carry the national flag, along with three other team members, namely Rahmat Duhe, Muhammad Akbar and Muhammad Aditya Ersyah.
Meanwhile, Col. Inf. Putra Widiastawa acted as commander in the flag-raising ceremony. (ebf)