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Jakarta Post

The sinking megalopolis

Wed, February 26, 2020   /   05:36 am
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    Atlantis for a day: Bendungan Hilir is seen flooded in Central Jakarta on Tuesday. JP/Donny Fernando

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    Sorry, we’re closed: A railway officer gives a signal using his flag on a flooded railway at Sudirman Station in Jakarta on Tuesday. JP/Dhoni Setiawan

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    Urban river: Kids play under the inundated Kemayoran underpass in Gunung Sahari, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday. JP/Seto Wardhana

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    Have fun where you can: Children swim in a flooded area in Bukit Duri, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday. The area was flooded because of the poor condition of the local drainage system. JP/Dhoni Setiawan

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    Making a splash: Children play in flood water on Jl. Gunung Sahari in Central Jakarta on Tuesday. JP/Seto Wardhana

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    Pleasure cruise: A man takes a selfie as he is pushed in a rubber boat in an inundated part of Jl. Kemang Raya in South Jakarta on Tuesday. JP/Wendra Ajistyatama

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    Safe space: Local residents gather in a shelter inside a school in Bendungan Hilir, Central Jakarta. JP/Dhoni Setiawan

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    Boy in a tub: A man floats his son in a plastic basin while passing through an inundated part of Jl.Raya Grogol in West Jakarta on Tuesday. JP/Donny Fernando

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    Life goes on: A local resident, Nurhayati, cooks in her flooded kitchen in Satria Raya Grogol, West Jakarta, on Tuesday. JP/Donny Fernando

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    Chilling out: A number of people pose amid the floodwaters on Jl. Gunung Sahari, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday. JP/Seto Wardhana

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.