In a speech he delivered at the opening ceremony of this integrated cross-border post, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) expressed hope that all border crossers could be served well.
"I hope the Sota cross-border post officials will provide our citizens wanting to cross the Indonesia-PNG land border with better and more comfortable services," he said.
President Jokowi's speech at the inauguration of the cross-border post in Soto Sub-district, Merauke District, Papua Province, was streamed on the Presidential Secretariat's YouTube channel.
He highlighted the importance of border areas for Indonesia as they function as Indonesia's front porches that represent the nation's image. Therefore, they must sustainably be developed.
Having the border areas get well developed will present Indonesia's progress that makes the entire nation proud, President Jokowi said.
To this end, over the past seven years, he has ordered related government agencies to rebuild various cross-border posts across the archipelago.
However, the reconstruction of the cross-border posts that has made the nation have a new physical image must also be completed with a continuous improvement in public services, according to President Jokowi.
"Providing new ways of serving the public becomes our commitment to developing Indonesia from its periphery," he said.
The Sota cross-border post is expected to help boost new economic growth centers, and improve services in the Indonesia-PNG land border area of Merauke District.
At the end, its presence would hopefully make local residents near the border area have deeper love and pride of Indonesia, President Jokowi said.
Noted as the eighth integrated cross-border post in Indonesia, and second one in Papua after the PLBN Skouw, the PLBN Sota relatively has complete facilities.
The facilities include a commercial building, a market, social and public facilities, a worship place, a worker dormitory, accomodation facility, pedestrian facility, and a parking area.
The inauguration of the Sota integrated cross-border post was marked by the Tifa drum beats and signing of an inscription during which President Jokowi was accompanied by several ministers and top state officials.
Among those attending the event were Coordinating Political, Legal, and Security Minister Mahfud MD, Home Minister Tito Karnavian, Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono, House of Representatives (DPR) Speaker Puan Maharani, and Indonesian Military (TNI) Commander Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto.
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