Text: Jerry Adiguna
Jakartans have once again been hit by massive flooding, brining the tally to four major floods in less than two months.
Heavy downpours from Monday to Tuesday morning inundated a number of regions in Jakarta. Houses, office buildings, schools and hospitals were flooded. Not even the Presidential Palace escaped.
A total of 3,565 residents were displaced and spread between 40 evacuation points. State-owned electricity company PLN was forced to turn off electricity in flood-affected areas for safety reasons.
Forty-one roads in the Jakarta area were flooded. A motorcyclist died on Jl. Gajah Mada, Central Jakarta, when the driver hit a pothole obscured by flood water and was launched from his vehicle.
In Cakung, East Jakarta, dozens of residents demonstrated in front of the Jakarta Garden City (JGC) AEON Mall. They blamed the building for causing flooding in their neighbourhood. The demonstration led to the destruction of a number of facilities at the mall.
The circumstances raise concerns about the seriousness of the city government’s flood mitigation policy.
It is hard to believe that the city administration is serious about flood mitigation when its 2020 budget allocation for this purpose stands at only 1.1 percent of the Rp 87.9 trillion (US$6.4 billion) total.