The Jakarta Post
Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Ignasius Jonan has been largely evasive when asked by journalists about the massive power outage that has affected millions of people on the western part of Java Island.
He was mum when ambushed by reporters following an emergency meeting with President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo at the state electricity company PLN's office on Monday.
But the minister was far from restrained on social media.
Jonan, who only recently set up an official Instagram account with the handle @ignasius.jonan, has been replying to comments from PLN customers who were angered by the massive blackout.
One user @munirbiyzantium commented on Jonan's post a day ago, saying "[...] electricity went out without notice from PLN, in the future if there's a blackout in Greater Jakarta, PLN should provide information," the user said.
His reply was short: "Just sue PLN".
In his reply to another Instagram user @lukman.saputra31, Jonan said: "Just ask PLN and the State-Owned Enterprises [SOEs] Minister [Rini Sumarno], who is responsible for the [company]. We are the regulator that oversees and monitors the operator.”
Sunday’s power outage was most likely the worst blackout that has hit Greater Jakarta and West Java since 1997, causing the capital and some cities in the region to experience worsened traffic congestion and disruption to businesses and communications.
The electricity went out at 11:50 a.m. on Sunday for about eight hours and remained unstable and patchy until the time of writing.
It was not the first time Jonan has lashed out at a state-owned company. Three weeks ago, he questioned the capability of state energy giant Pertamina in the wake of an oil spill incident in its Offshore Northwest Java (ONWJ) Block.
He writes on his Instagram account: "Pertamina has fully operated the block since 2018 and now there's a problem, so is Pertamina able to operate offshore platforms?"