Indonesian President opens ASEAN Scout Jamboree
With 1,600 Scouts from nine countries in Southeast Asia, Indonesian President H.E. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono officially opened the ASEAN Scout Jamboree 2008 at the Cibubur Scout Camping Ground, east of Jakarta, in the afternoon of 19 October 2008.
The President was accompanied by Coordinating Minister of People’s Welfare Aburizal Bakrie, Vice Governor of DKI Jakarta Priyanto, and Gerakan Pramuka Chief Commissioner Prof. Dr. Azrul Azwar.
This special Jamboree that will run until the 26th of October became the gathering point of young Scouts from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, with the special participation of Scouts from Vietnam. Gerakan Pramuka/Indonesia invited a delegation from Laos to observe the activities of Scouts and to get re-acquainted with Scouting.
In his speech, the President cited that despite the ongoing economic crisis, a gathering of young people learning together is a worthy investment of any country in the ASEAN and the world at large. He cited the qualities that Scouting could deliver such as leadership, cooperation, solidarity that all start with the character development of individual members.
Chief Commissioner of Indonesia Dr. Azrul Azwar explained that this event is a "green jamboree" as Scouts will learn how to reduce and recycle wastes, and to keep the Jamboree arena green during and after the jamboree.
The first ASEAN Jamboree was held in January 1994 in Mt Makiling in the Philippines that gathered 14,790 participants from southeast Asian countries.
-- Berthold Sinaulan, GP Asst. National Commissioner for Public Relations