New South Wales Governor Delivers Speech in Fluent Indonesian at Australia-Indonesia Awards

The fluency in the Indonesian language by David Hurley, New South Wales Governor, a populous state in Australia proves the popularity of Indonesian in foreign countries, especially in the land of the Kangaroo, which is something to be proud of.

At the Awards Night of the Australia-Indonesia Awards held by the Australia-Indonesia Association (AIA), which took place in Sydney, on March 11 2017, the NSW governor impressed during his speech in Indonesian. The speech was delivered in front of various parties, including RI Ambassador Najib Riphat Kesoema and his wife (Nino Riphat), AIA President (Eric de Haas), senators, government officials, entrepreneurs, academics, athletes, culturalist and Autralian students which are actually the Indonesian lovers. The Consul General of RI in Sydney, Yayan Mulyana was also present on this event.

By wearing a black long-sleeve Batik, Governor David Hurley was accompanied by his wife, Linda Hurley directly addressed and started the speech by saying “Selamat Malam” (Good evening) to the audiences.

Governor David Hurley who had served as the Commander of  Australian Armed Forces, delivered his entire speech in Indonesian, although in the end he also translated the speech into English for the Autralian Public.

In his speech, the NSW governor asserted that Indonesia and Australia have good bilateral relations which will be important for both countries and the region in the future.

The Indonesian speech from the NSW governor led to the other Australian officials also present at the award night to open and close their speeches by using the typical Indonesian greetings, as was done by senator Zed Seselja who represented the Prime Minister Malcolm Tumbull and Jonathan O’Dea who represented NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian.

Meanwhile, the RI ambassador to Australia, Najib Riphat Kesoema stated that the AIA Awards night which was being held for the third time, is very important in order to encourage the roles and contributions from the community in both countries, actually in various fields, starting from the environmental conservation, education, small and medium enterprises (UKM), sport and tourism.

“The candidates and the winners of AIA are inspirational people who selflessly try to help in advancing peoples’ interests and relations of both countries,” said The Ambassador Nadjib.

The RI Ambassador who has known the NSW governor for a long time also expressed his appreciation for AIA, which was established a few months before Indonesian Independence in 1945, then became one of the oldest organization in the world that still exists and had a close attachment and relationship with Indonesia. AIA has been the affective link in promoting mutual understanding between the people of both countries.

According to Nadjib, the Indonesian language in Australia has become one of the most popular foreign languages, besides Mandarin and Japanese. The enthusiasts are not only students, but also government officials, military cadets and entrepreneurs. At this time, no fewer than 160 thousand Indonesian learners are spread over various parts in Australia.

In 2017 the Indonesian Institute (BBI) was established in Perth, Canberra, Melbourne and Tasmania which was inaugurated by President Joko Widodo during his visit to Sydney, on February 26, 2017. In the near future, other BBIs will be built, such as in Sydney, Darwin, Adelaide and Brisbane.

At the Award Night, the AIA Award 2017 winners were Luke Bowen in Research field category, Robie Gaspar (sports field) known as the first Australian professional football player  who ever joined Liga Indonesia, and Judy Anglim (tourism field) because of her efforts in promoting Indonesian travel destinations for tourists in Australia.

During the Award Night Javanese music was well performed by the Langen Suka group, mostly made up of Australian members. Langen Suka is led by Vi King Lim who has been active for more than 15 years in promoting Gamelan in Australia.

Other than Javanese Gamelan, there was also a Balinese dance perdormance by Mrs. Sumerti. (Source: Indonesian Embassy in Canberra)