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Jakarta Post

Jakarta’s 493rd anniversary celebrations to go virtual amid COVID-19 pandemic

  • Alya Nurbaiti

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sun, June 21, 2020   /   09:11 am
Jakarta’s 493rd anniversary celebrations to go virtual amid COVID-19 pandemic Happy birthday!: Thousands of people pack the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta during the Jakarta Night Festival on June 22, 2019. The festival was held to celebrate the 492nd anniversary of the capital city. (The Jakarta Post/Dhoni Setiawan)

The Jakarta administration has opted for a virtual celebration to commemorate the capital city’s 493rd anniversary, which will fall on June 22 amid the unceasing COVID-19 pandemic.

It will be the first virtual celebration for the city, which annually celebrates its anniversary with various shows and big events.

The Jakarta administration has suspended the annual Jakarta Fair to limit crowds and curb the spread of the coronavirus. However, it has also prepared a number of virtual activities to jazz up the jubilee including the Jakarta Great Online Sale, virtual tours across the city’s tourist destinations and cultural streaming programs.

“This is a unique time for the city to celebrate its anniversary. The idea is to allow the people in Jakarta to continue celebrating while maintaining health and safety through social distancing,” Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan told The Jakarta Post in a virtual exclusive interview on Saturday.

Read also: Tanah Abang Market reopens for business with COVID-19 protocols, odd-even policy

Anies said the theme selected for this year’s anniversary was “Jakarta Resilience”, to reflect the perseverance of Jakarta residents in battling the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The pandemic we’re now experiencing is an opportunity to let the future generation be proud of us that we’re able to survive using collective efforts,” he said.

Jakarta administration secretary Saefullah said the public could enjoy virtual attractions starting Saturday until June 22 through the city’s brand new platform Beritajakarta.tv, as well as the city’s social media accounts.

The virtual city tours will include five museums in Jakarta, Ragunan Zoo, Sea World Jakarta in Ancol, the Planetarium and the dancing fountains at the National Monument (Monas).

Various programs and a live report of the ceremony at City Hall will be aired on Beritajakarta.tv.

The administration has also prepared a Zoom meeting that will be attended by the governor and 40 citizens who make the most creative birthday wish videos through Instagram accounts @dkijakarta and @jsclounge.

Jakarta, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country, has the highest number of infections across the archipelago with 9,829 confirmed cases and 585 fatalities.