West Java Secretariat of Public Relations and Protocol noted in its press release on Tuesday that Emil was at the receiving end of this praise when he was the keynote speaker at the UN-Habitat Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa, Monday (May 27).
Before the opening of the UN Session on Settlements, Sharif highlighted the importance of Emil's experience in building the city to be shared with UN-Habitat member nations.
Hence, Emil's presence was deemed crucial at the meeting and was the main speaker at the UN-Habitat session.
Sharif drew attention to Emil's breakthroughs, including his leadership role in transforming society and realizing greater empowerment, which drew the attention of the UN-Habitat.
The other contributions are fostering trust by opening up a broader communication channel between the government and community.
Moreover, Emil had successfully incorporated information and communication technology to expedite government services.
The development approach is no longer restricted to building physical infrastructure but also entails the non-physical or mental direction by boosting the community's happiness index through a soft approach.
With these accomplishments under Emil's belt, Sharif is keen to take a cue from him on ways to organize the city.
To this end, Sharif has assigned his colleagues to coordinate with Emil over the collaboration.
In the meantime, Governor Emil was thankful to UN-Habitat for allowing him to be the keynote speaker at one of the prominent congregations at the United Nations.
Furthermore, the UN-Habitat session was to be initially held, with 193 member nations participating.
Emil noted that having a background of being an architect and urban planner, he was grateful to have the opportunity, from being the mayor to the governor of West Java, to bring about broader changes.
Emil acknowledged that it was no easy task to bring about changes. Opposing citizens, who staged protests, too posed a challenge for him to initiate changes in Bandung City.
Some of the programs that Emil has applied and have run successfully in Bandung are transforming negative spaces into positive ones, such as the Cihampelas Skywalk (Ciwalk) as a public space that is not only used for hanging out but also for a student to complete his/her thesis.
He termed these projects as the happiness projects, since with their implementation, Bandung's happiness increased.
"Happiness increases, from 60 to 70 percent," Emil stated.
Following a short discussion, Sharif and Emil then took a group photograph.
On that occasion, Emil offered a personally designed batik cloth that bore a Garuda Kencana motif and the words RK as a souvenir.