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Jakarta Post

Urbanites hopeful, indigenous people concerned about new capital plan

  • Kharishar Kahfi and N. Adri

    The Jakarta Post

Balikpapan, East Kalimantan   /   Sun, October 13, 2019   /  04:18 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Construction continues on the Balikpapan-Samarinda toll road in East Kalimantan on Aug. 28. The exit in Samboja will be an access point to the new capital city.(JP/Akbar Nugroho Gumay)

Most East Kalimantan residents, including Balikpapan-based trader Mulyono, have felt elated since Aug. 26, when President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo announced the government had picked the province to be the location of the new capital city. After years of in-depth study, the President announced the country’s new capital city would be built in parts of North Penajam Paser and Kutai Kartanegara regencies in East Kalimantan. The location was picked because it is, among other reasons, relatively free from the threat of natural disasters such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes and is situated in the middle of the country – symbolizing equal development across all parts of the archipelago. Mulyono, who moved to the city from the country’s most populated island of Java in 1993, said the plan was a beacon of hope for the province. “I’m del...