As Central Java Governor, Ganjar Pranowo, closed the 2019 ASEAN Schools Games (ASG) competition at Lumbini Park, Borobudur Temple, Magelang District, on Wednesday, he expressed his appreciation to all the participants, as well as the organizing committee and volunteers who made the event possible.
"Congratulations to all the winners. For those who lost, remember that the strongest is not the one who always wins, but the strongest people are those who never give up when they lose," he said.
He said the ASG 2019 might have ended today, but togetherness and friendship will continue. "Hopefully all the pleasant memories we made during the ASG 2019 in Semarang, Central Java, will bring participants back here," he said.
A day before the young athletes participating in the 2019 ASG returned to their respective countries, they were invited to take a walk to visit several tourist attractions in the Central Java's capital of Semarang, including the Sam Poo Kong Temple and Lawang Sewu.
He said the participants not only competed at the ASG, but were also invited to get to know the culture of the organizing city, so that they would bring back good memories about Semarang and Indonesia to their respective countries.
At the closing ceremony, the Deputy for Youth Development of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Asrorun Ni'am, representing the Youth Minister of Sports, Imam Nahrawi, said that the cooperation between the ASEAN member countries could be enhanced through sports because sports has became a strategic tool in improving human relations, especially for the younger generation.
He said the ASG is an annual multi-sport event for high school student athletes in the ASEAN member countries and held under the authority of the ASEAN Schools Sports Council (ASSC).
In addition to competitions in the field of sports, what is equally important is the value of solidarity, brotherhood and friendship for student athletes in the ASEAN, and more broadly for young people in the Southeast Asian region.
He said when the athletes leave Semarang, they could implement the meaning contained in the slogan "unity, spirit and respect" to shape the character of the athletes, so that they can become the pride of Southeast Asia.
The process of handing over the host flag for the next event was carried out by Ong Kim Soon, Chairman of the Technical Committee of the ASSC; Salvador Malana, Senior Minister Officer of Education Department of the Philippines; Asrorun Ni'am, Deputy for the Youth Development Section of the Indonesian Ministry of Youth and Sports; and Mohamed Jais Bin Hj Abd Rahman, Acting Director of Co-Curricular Education of the Brunei Darussalam Ministry of Education.
The host for the ASG 2020 is the Philippines, and Dumaguete will serve as the host city.
Ending the series of closing ceremonies, all participants had the opportunity to enjoy the sunset from the top of Borobudur Temple, which is the largest Buddhist temple in the world.
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