Jusuf Kalla presides over 2018 Asian Games closing ceremony
Vice President Jusuf Kalla, as the chairman of the steering council of the 2018 Indonesian Asian Games Organizing Committee (INASGOC), presided over the closing ceremony of the 18th Asian Games at the Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) Main Stadium, Senayan, Jakarta, on Sunday evening.
Kalla arrived at the GBK at 7 pm and was welcomed by Coordinating Human Development and Culture Minister Puan Maharani as deputy chairwoman of the INASGOC steering council.
Also present was the president of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach, president of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, INASGOC chairman Erick Thohir, Indonesian chef de mission Syafruddin, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi and Youth and Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi.
The closing of the 2018 Asian Games began with the national anthem Indonesia Raya, followed by a marching band parade by the police academy and military academy, as well as a procession of 2018 Asian Games contingents.
Indonesian athletes succeeded in achieving their target in the 2018 Asian Games by ranking fourth after China, Japan and Korea (KOR). The country won 98 medals, comprising 31 gold, 24 silver and 43 bronze medals.
Hundreds of athletes from various countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, Vietnam and China, wore raincoats during the procession. However, many other athletes chose to go without waterproof attire, especially national flag bearers who were striding ahead of their national teams.
Medium and high intensity rain poured over the GBK sports complex from 4:30 pm. Nonetheless, the ceremony continued as scheduled.
Apart from the parade of athletes from 45 countries, the organizers also presented the volunteers participating in the sports festival.
The three mascots of the 2018 Asian Games, Kaka, Atung and Bhin Bhin, also joined the closing parade. The organizers also featured video recordings of competition highlights, while vocalist Isyana Saraswati sang under gentle drizzle.
Meanwhile, President Joko Widodo greeted the contingents and spectators present at the closing ceremony from a tent sheltering displaced people in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara. The island recently experienced an earthquake, leaving many homeless.
President Jokowi appeared on a big screen at the GBK. “I apologize for being unable to attend this event. I’m here in Lombok,” said the President, inviting the applause of the huge audience.
President Jokowi was accompanied by West Nusa Tenggara Governor Muhammad Zainul Majdi and some of the displaced people living in the camp.
“Congratulations and thank you to all contingents. This is the real Energy of Asia. We’re united to bring virtue to the world,” added President Jokowi.
Reporters: Fransiska Ninditya, Genta Tenri Mawangi, Monalisa
AG Media and PR in cooperation with The Jakarta Post