The Jakarta Post
In light of the celebration of Valentine’s Day, the Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) in Makassar, South Sulawesi, has urged stores to refrain from openly selling and displaying contraceptives.
The agency has banned public condom sales in Makassar since 2015.
In a circular letter issued on Tuesday, the agency now prohibits supermarkets, drugstores and grocery stores from selling contraceptives, especially condoms, openly. The letter also specifies a ban on sales of contraceptives to minors.
Buyers who wish to purchase condoms are required to show their ID card to store assistants.
Aside from distributing the letter, the agency will also conduct condom raids on convenience stores and drugstores to make sure that products are not displayed openly in the store.
“Condoms are for married people. They are not supposed to be sold publicly, especially displaying them at the front of the store or next to children’s snacks. We always see stores putting condoms next to chocolates, hence we issued the circular,” Makassar Satpol PP head Iman Hud said on Wednesday.
Acting Makassar mayor Iqbal Suhaeb expressed his agreement with the policy.
“During the Valentine’s Day celebration, sometimes people will lose control and commit acts that violate our ethics and culture, like consuming drugs or engaging in premarital sex. We should prevent this from happening,” Iqbal said.
The Makassar administration also issued a circular letter to prohibit students from celebrating the day at school through the education and culture agency.
In the letter, Iqbal requested that teachers refrain from organizing events related to Valentine’s Day at school, especially if the event disrupted the teaching process.
However, he also emphasized that the Makassar administration did not prohibit the public, including children, from celebrating Valentine’s Day as long as it did not go against the nation’s values, ethics and culture.
“We are not prohibiting people from celebrating Valentine’s Day. We are only concerned if the celebration leads to people violating our ethics and culture, or disrupts the teaching process at schools. If people celebrate the day with positive activities we will support them,” Iqbal said. (dpk)