The activity is the First Lady’s initiative, Danarsih Santosa Doellah, chairperson of Ratna Busana, a traditional clothing admirers’ women’s association in Surakarta, informed here on Wednesday.
“Mrs. Ana (Iriana) reminded that kebaya originated from Solo; this (the parade) is also in line with the ‘Kebaya Goes to UNESCO’ movement. Therefore, she asked me to hold this parade. She said she would attend,” Doellah said.
The First Lady has promised not to come alone but bring the wives of all governors in Indonesia and the spouses of cabinet ministers in the Onward Indonesian Cabinet Era Solidarity Action Organization (OASE KIM), she added.
“Seeing her enthusiasm, I am determined to walk with the First Lady wearing a kebaya on October 2,” she remarked.
Meanwhile, parade organizer acting head, Febri Dipokusumo, said that the movement to promote wearing kebaya is currently popular in Indonesia.
According to Dipokusumo, there is a specific purpose why the movement has been joined by many communities, which is, to support the proposal of kebaya as a UNESCO world cultural heritage.
The kebaya parade on Sunday will involve 2,500 participants, who will walk wearing kebayas from Loji Gandrung, the Surakarta Mayor’s official residence, to Dalem Wuryoningratan, which is located about 750 meters away, she said.
Thirty-five financially independent women will welcome the guests at Loji Gandrung, she added. The women will include jamu (Indonesian herbal medicine) and local snack traders who wear kebayas and batik every day.
“We chose them because they still wear kebaya and batik as daily outfits when working. They represent the image of Indonesian women by wearing a kebaya,” she said.