News Desk, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has continued his tradition of wearing customary regional attire while delivering his annual State Address, this time donning Bangka Belitung dress.
Arriving at the Senayan legislative compound in Jakarta at around 9 a.m. on Tuesday, the President appeared in a dark green embellished top with a golden headdress. First Lady Irian was by his side in a pastel pink modern kebaya.
The Bangka Belitung Islands are a province to the east of southern Sumatra. The province was also the childhood home of Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama, a Christian of Chinese descent from the small town of Belitung Timur, who was Jokowi's deputy governor during his tenure in Jakarta from 2012 to 2014.
According to the website of the province's capital city of Pangkalpinang, traditional Bangka Belitung attire bears influences from Arabic and Chinese cultures.
"[The traditional dress] started when Arabian traders married local women of Chinese descent and introduced wedding attire with Arabic and Chinese motifs. The local people considered the attire to be beautiful and started to wear the same clothing, combined with local Bangka Belitung patterns," the website said.
At last year's State Address, Jokowi wore the all-black attire of the indigenous Baduy people of Lebak regency, Banten, complete with a traditional black-and-blue cap and a handwoven net bag slung across his chest.
In 2020, the President wore the traditional Sabu attire of East Nusa Tenggara at the address, and in 2019 he wore Sasak attire from West Nusa Tenggara and then changed into the traditional dress of Bali's Klungkung regency to attend a flag-raising ceremony. (dre)