The Jakarta Post
Most residents of Bekasi in West Java would agree to their satellite city becoming part of the province of Jakarta but not part of any other area, according to Bekasi Mayor Rahmat “Pepen” Effendi.
“If we held a survey, it would be around 60, 70 or 80 percent [agreeing to merge with Jakarta], because Jakarta has a great support system,” Rahmat said on Monday, kompas.com reported.
Bogor Mayor Bima Arya and Bogor Regent Ade Yasin have floated the idea of creating a new province called Greater Bogor and inviting Bogor city and regency, Sukabumi city and regency, Cianjur, Depok as well as Bekasi city and regency to become part of it.
Rahmat said he did not think much of the Greater Bogor idea and would be opposed to Bekasi joining, because in terms of culture and history Bekasi was closer to Jakarta.
“The Pakuan [Kingdom] was in Bogor and Sukabumi; in Bhagasasi (Bekasi), meanwhile, there was the Purnawarman Kingdom of the Tarumanagara,” Rahmat said, referring to the ancient Hindu kingdom that used to encompass Java island’s west coast, including modern-day Bekasi, Jakarta and Tangerang.
Rahmat dispelled the notion that he preferred Bekasi to merge with Jakarta as a southeast Jakarta municipality to take advantage of the capital’s wealth for speeding up the development of his area.
“It’s not about budgets. There’s the idea of Southeast Jakarta or whatever, but in principle, if it is in the interest of speeding up development, why not,” Rahmat said. (ami)