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Jakarta Post

Jokowi: Ciliwung River could be as clean as Seoul's Cheonggyecheon

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, September 11, 2018   /   02:17 pm
Jokowi: Ciliwung River could be as clean as Seoul's Cheonggyecheon President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo takes a walk to the Cheonggyecheon River in Seoul on Tuesday. (Courtesy of Presidential Press Bureau/-)

The biggest river of Jakarta could and should be as clean as Cheonggyecheon River in Seoul, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said during a visit to South Korea.

“The river that flows through the city of Seoul, Cheongyecheon River, is very clean - a good inspiration. If the Ciliwung [River] in Jakarta could be as clean as this, whoa… and I believe it could,” he said right after walking down to the Cheongyecheon on Tuesday.

The President said the Cheonggyecheon, back in 2003, had been in a similar condition to the Ciliwung today. He praised then-Seoul Mayor Lee Myung-bak for his initiative to restore the river.

“It took only two years and three months during the tenure of Seoul Mayor Lee Myung-bak. So that the mayor became the president,” he said. 

Read also: What makes Jakarta's rivers ugly and smelly

Jokowi said that, if there was a will, the Ciliwung River could be restored without the need to wait for rules and regulations.

Jokowi, who was granted honorary citizenship in Seoul back in 2017, asked Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon to share the city’s experience in cleaning up urban rivers. 

“Jakarta and Seoul are sister cities. Whatever you need, we will be ready, because Bapak [Jokowi] is an honorary citizen of Seoul,” Mayor Park said.

Jokowi, accompanied by Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, was visiting Seoul on Monday and Tuesday to strengthen economic cooperation as one of numerous objectives of the visit. (sau)