Muhammad Hendartyo, Jakarta – Maritime Affairs Coordinating Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan defends President Jokowi's English speaking ability while recalling their visit to the G20 summit.
"If his English isn't that well, then Ivanka Trump and every other world leader would not have [had a great time] conversing with the president," said Luhut in his Facebook post on Tuesday.
Luhut then highlighted the president's strong Javanese dialect while speaking in English, which he says he also has but from another region known as a Batak accent. He then asserts that he isn't ashamed of the local Indonesian trait seeping through his English.
"I'm a proud Indonesian, and I'm proud of my Batak dialect," said Luhut.
He further compared President Jokowi's strongly-accented English with other world leaders who also face the same situation where they speak with their local accents.
"There is no need to belittle someone merely for how heavily accented their English is," Luhut reminded.
Moreover, Luhut mentioned that Indonesia is currently popular among G20 members, which are among the world's largest economies. He argues that it is evident in 17 countries that requested a bilateral meeting with Indonesia.
Among many bilateral meetings, Luhut says that Turkish President Erdogan often personally calls President Jokowi if an issue arises in the Middle East.