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Jakarta Post

Women's March in Jakarta to be held in April after elections

  • Kharishar Kahfi

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, March 6, 2019   /   05:26 pm
Women's March in Jakarta to be held in April after elections Fight for your rights: Activists joining with the Yogyakarta Women Struggle Committee stage a rally to celebrate 2018 International Women’s Day at Titik Nol (point zero) Monument in Yogyakarta on March 8. (JP/Bambang Muryanto)

A number of civil society organizations and communities are set to hold the third annual Women’s March Jakarta on April 27 to commemorate Kartini Day, which falls on the heroine’s birthday of April 21.

“This year’s Women’s March is going to be held in late-April to avoid politicization of the event ahead of the upcoming general elections on April 17. This is also to ensure the security and convenience of participants,” Women’s March Jakarta 2019 chairman Fahmia Badib said in a statement.

“We’re also going to reclaim the original meaning of Kartini Day. We want to celebrate [Raden Ajeng] Kartini as one of the most important Indonesian female figures thanks to her struggle for women’s rights.”

The release said Kartini Day was nowadays mostly associated with a display of traditional attire and cooking contests among women.

Apart from the commemoration, participants are also expected to voice their demands concerning women’s right as well as other marginal and minority group across the country.

A set of demands, slated to be launched in early April, will cover various topics, including the long-awaited sexual violence bill and domestic worker protection bill, the elimination or revision of discriminative laws and bylaws as well as social protection for every gender and social group.

More than 50 organizations and communities are expected to participate in the march, including Amnesty International Indonesia, the Indonesian Women’s Coalition and Women’s Legal Aid (LBH APIK).

Similar marches will be held in 24 cities across the archipelago, including Bali, Bandung in West Java, Medan in North Sumatra and Surabaya in East Java.

Apart from the march, Women’s March Jakarta will launch a fundraising campaign for three organizations: LBH APIK, the National Network for Domestic Worker Advocacy (Jala PRT) and the Migrant Workers Big Family (Keluarga Besar Buruh Migran, Kabar Bumi). The Rp 100 million (US$7,068) fundraiser is expected to help the three organizations to provide more services in women’s rights protection.

This is the third women’s march to be held in Jakarta. The first one was initiated by Jakarta Feminist Discussion Group in 2017 with 800 participants. The event marched on a year later with around 2,000 participants.