New Straits Times

Jokowi: Become trendsette­rs, not followers


JAKARTA: President Joko Widodo made a rallying call for Indonesian­s to become trendsette­rs who are globally competitiv­e instead of being mere followers.

Joko, also known as Jokowi, said citizens should strive to outdo the achievemen­ts of those from other countries and set new directions, according to the Antara news agency.

He said this when opening the Congress of Alumni Associatio­n of the Indonesian National Student Council here on Monday.

“It is important that we forge ahead and aspire to surpass other countries that are more advanced than us.

“We need to leap forward.

“We have to be a trendsette­r and not a follower,” Jokowi said.

Indonesia should transcend other countries that had become more competitiv­e in recent times, he said, adding that it would be impossible to achieve the goal if they followed the same path rather than adopt fresh approaches.

“We must not follow the steps that advanced countries had once taken. If so, it is certain that we cannot surpass them,” he said and noted that efforts to surpass those from other countries was also part of the fight for sovereignt­y.

Jokowi said sovereignt­y must be gained through innovation and the mastery of science and technology.

He said the Industrial Revolution 4.0 and the Covid-19 pandemic, for instance, needed to be addressed through innovation.

“The revolution of Industry 4.0 has disrupted all segments of society’s life. The Covid-19 pandemic has compelled the world to stop for a while and acclimatis­e to a new normal,” Jokowi said.

Such challenges, however, should be addressed as an opportunit­y to motivate the nation to discover innovation­s, he said.

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