Mei Leandha, Karo – The people of Karo Regency, North Sumatra, planned to build a 75-meter-high statue of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo in Liang Melas Datas. The project, named Juma Jokowi, was expected to cost Rp2.5 billion.
The groundbreaking ceremony for the project took place on Saturday, Nov. 4. Medan Mayor Bobby Nasution was present as the President's representative.
Head of the construction committee, Adil Sebayang, said the monument project would be completed in February 2024. "The current funding is Rp50 million from the remaining fund of the orange shipment, plus the contribution of the residents of six villages and three sub-villages totaling Rp400 million," Sebayang said.
Speaking to Tempo, Adil claimed that the exact shape of the statue has not yet been decided.
In response to Sebayang's statement, Bobby said, "I asked friends in Medan and Karo to donate [for the project] and they agreed to provide Rp500 million." His remark was followed by applause.
Sebayang said the Jokowi statue was a form of gratitude for the President's road repair program in the region. Karo residents had also sent three tons of oranges to the State Palace in Jakarta to show their appreciation.
In a video call through Bobby Nasution who is his son-in-law, the President laughed when he was informed about the statue.
"The government's job is to serve the people, building roads is part of the government's job. I'm happy if the people are happy, that's all. Thank you," Jokowi said with a smile.