MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, JAKARTA – Many Indonesian historians argue that Sumpah Pemuda (Youth Pledge), uttered on October 28, 1928), represents a pivotal transition in the nation’s struggle for independence, shifting from primordialism to modern nationalism.
The Sumpah Pemuda became an iconic declaration uniting people from diverse backgrounds, tribes, regions, and religions. It embodied a collective commitment to three fundamental principles: a shared homeland, a common nation, and a universal language.
This commitment was more than just a symbolic moment. It signified a departure from the legacy of feudalism that had long fostered division based on ethnicity and region. Notably, it played a significant role in liberating Indonesia from colonial rule, eventually leading to its independence in 1945.
However, as Indonesia commemorates the 95th anniversary of the Sumpah Pemuda, it is an opportune time to reflect on and rejuvenate the spirit of the Sumpah Pemuda. Scholars emphasize that Indonesia’s national identity is grappling with a paradox: a resurgence of primordial sentiments in various aspects of life, including politics, economics, culture, and religion.
Desvian Bandarsyah, Vice Rector II of Universitas Muhammadiyah Prof. DR. HAMKA (UHAMKA), highlighted the growing importance of intelligence and compassion in addressing this complex issue. He mentioned how national concerns are increasingly overshadowed by primordial sentiments rooted in ethnicity, politics, economics, and religion, progressively eroding the nation’s unity.
“Personal and group interests have taken precedence, and our national values are being undermined by the current Indonesian elite. Both the elite and the youth appear to be entangled in political patronage,” said Desvian at the monthly preaching of Muhammadiyah raising a theme ’95 Years of Sumpah Pemuda: Reinvention of Muhammadiyah Role’.
Desvian called upon Muhammadiyah to prepare its young cadres to become champions in various fields, dedicated to upholding the values embodied in the Sumpah Pemuda.
“We have to revive the values of the past, inspired by the Sumpah Pemuda, to strengthen our organization and make it more relevant in encouraging the younger generation to dedicate themselves to the nation,” said Desvian.
Desvian said the importance of dedicating efforts to building a stronger Indonesia, where economic, political, cultural, legal, and societal harmony is pivotal in preserving the nation’s identity.
As Indonesia commemorates the 95th anniversary of the Youth Pledge, the call for unity and modern nationalism remains a beacon guiding the nation toward a brighter future.