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Jakarta Post

Dutch minister self-isolates after meeting RI transport minister during royal visit

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, March 16, 2020   /   02:35 pm
Dutch minister self-isolates after meeting RI transport minister during royal visit In the line of duty: Netherlands Infrastructure and Water Management Minister Cora Van Nieuwenhuizen (left) poses with Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi in Jakarta on March 11, when the two countries signed an agreement on transportation cooperation. Budi has since tested positive for COVID-19 to become the 76th confirmed case in Indonesia. (Courtesy of/Indonesian Transportation Ministry/-)

The Netherlands Infrastructure and Water Management Minister, Cora van Nieuwenhuizen, has announced that she will be working from home for two weeks after her official visit to Indonesia last week, during which she met with Indonesian Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi.

The government announced on Saturday that Budi had tested positive for COVID-19 and is now being treated at the Gatot Subroto Army Hospital in Jakarta.

Van Nieuwenhuizen said in a statement that she would continue to perform her duties from home until March 24, during which time she would still be available to receive phone calls and emails.

However, she would not attend the parliamentary debates as health authorities have instructed, as reported on Saturday by the online edition of Dutch daily Algemeen Dagblad, AD.nl .

Van Nieuwenhuizen met with Budi on March 11, when the two ministers signed a cooperation statement on transportation and human resource capacity-building in the transportation sector.

“I feel fine. But I will comply with the advice given by RIVM,” she said on Dutch broadcast media RTL Nieuws, referring to the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment.

The minister’s spokesperson has said that she would not be tested for COVID-19, as she was not experiencing any symptoms.

The 56-year-old minister came to Jakarta last week during the four-day state visit of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands.

The Dutch delegation also included other ministers, including Foreign Minister Stef Blok.

Blok had earlier been in the news after meeting with a delegation from Iran – one of the countries hardest hit by a COVID-19 outbreak. The Dutch media spotlighted the meeting upon learning that the Iranian delegation was believed to have had contact Blok's his driver, who later tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

However, Blok’s spokesperson said that the minister would continue to work as usual and claimed he did not need to be tested for COVID-19.

By Sunday, the Netherlands had recorded 959 confirmed cases, including two cases that had recovered and 12 deaths.

Other high-ranking state officials who have contracted the virus around the world include Iranian Vice President Masoumeh Ebtekar, Australian Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton, French Minister of Culture Franck Riester and UK Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Nadine Dorries. (asp)


If you want to help in the fight against COVID-19, we have compiled an up-to-date list of community initiatives designed to aid medical workers and low-income people in this article. Link: [UPDATED] Anti-COVID-19 initiatives: Helping Indonesia fight the outbreak