Jakarta Provincial Government is scheduled to hold the Night Religious Festival (NRF) in the eve of Idul Adha (Islamic Day of Sacrifice), which falls on October 15. According to schedule, the event will be centered along Jl. MH Thamrin until Monas. At least 20 entertainment stages and 1,000 drums will enliven the event.
Jakarta Governor, Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo said such event is to indicate Jakarta is a religious city. A number of artists are slated to entertain the visitors, namely Sulis and Opick. “We’ll do takbiran (reciting God is great) and show Jakarta is a religious city,” he stated, Monday (9/23).
To smoothen the event, along Jl. MH Thamrin until Monas will be closed for all vehicles. “There will be drum carnival and it is being prepared. We also prepare more than 20 entertainment stages,” he told.
The event itself is free of charge. Jokowi continued that his party will soon cooperate with Jakarta City Police regarding the implementation of the Night Religious Festival. In addition, parking lot involving buildings near the event location has been prepared. “The event is free of charge,” he asserted.
The residents can also get the religious advice (tausyiah) from the scholars. Jokowi called the event with the syiar (Islamic proselytizing). “This is not a party, but syiar,” he finished.
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Seventy three shopping centers across the city have signed up to participate in the annual Jakarta Great Sale Festival from June 1 until July 14, to celebrate the capital’s 485th anniversary.
The festival is an annual event organized jointly by the Jakarta branch of the Indonesian Shopping Center Association (APPBI) and the Jakarta administration. This year, the festival will be longer than its usual 30 days, hoping to record more transactions.
“This year, we aim to reach total transactions of Rp 10 trillion (US$1.08 billion),” organizing committee secretary Darwin A. Roni said at the Senayan City shopping center in Central Jakarta on Wednesday.
He said that last year, the festival rang up sales of Rp 8 trillion in 68 participating shopping centers. “As the length of the festival and the number of participating shopping centers have increased, the transactions will increase as well,” he said.
An official from the Jakarta Economic Agency, Hasan Basri, said that the festival was expected to help the city’s economy grow. “More than 20 percent of the city’s revenue comes from the trading and tourism sectors,” he said, adding that lucrative discounts offered by participating shopping centers could attract both domestic and foreign shoppers.
Besides offering discounts of up to 70 percent, this year’s festival was also going to feature social and cultural activities, said Hasan. “We, for example, will hold blood donations in the 73 participating shopping centers,” Hasan said, adding that the committee was also preparing for a carnival displaying decorated carriages and giant ondel-ondel Betawi effigies.
According to the chairman of the organizing committee, Handaka Santosa, the Jakarta Great Sale is a unique festival because the participants will not offer discounted goods of old stock. “Shoppers will be provided with new goods produced specifically for the festival but sold at lower prices,” said Handaka, who is also the chairman of the APPBI.
The Jakarta Great Sale Festival has a long history, dating back to the 1980s.