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Jakarta Post

COVID-19: Jakarta awaits certainty from govt on quarantine

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, March 30, 2020   /   08:47 pm
COVID-19: Jakarta awaits certainty from govt on quarantine Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan (center), accompanied by Jakarta Police chief Insp. Gen. Nana Sudjana (left) and Kodam Jaya military commander Maj. Gen. Eko Margiyono, announces the extension of the COVID-19 state of emergency during a press briefing at the City Hall on March 28. (Courtesy of/Jakarta provincial adminsitration)

The Jakarta administration is waiting for the central government’s legal basis for putting the capital under a local quarantine in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said his administration had sent a letter to the government proposing a quarantine in line with the 2018 Health Quarantine Law. According to the law, the authority to issue a quarantine falls within the remit of the central government.

Anies said that in practice, the Jakarta administration had implemented the large-scale social restrictions detailed in Article 59 of the law, including the closure of schools and offices, as well as suspension of religious ceremonies and public activities.

“These are examples of what we have done in the past two weeks,” Anies told reporters at a press briefing at City Hall on Monday.

The Jakarta administration recently extended the capital's emergency status through until April 19, facilitating businesses, schools, places of worship and public places in suspending operations as usual in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Jakarta COVID-19 task force head Catur Laswanto said in a press briefing that as of Monday, there were 720 confirmed cases in the capital, with 76 deaths.

Catur said that 81 health workers from 30 hospitals across the city had contracted the virus.

To step up its efforts to contain the outbreak, the administration has recently instructed community unit heads and the family welfare program (PKK) to help with caring for vulnerable groups, such as people aged 60 years old and over, people with pre-existing health conditions such as heart and lung issues, high blood pressure or diabetes.

The government has yet to impose a quarantine to support regional administrations in handling the outbreak. Instead, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said after a meeting on Monday that the government should pursue a policy of “large-scale social restriction” and stricter physical distancing policies.

As of Monday, 1,414 people in Indonesia had tested positive for the novel coronavirus with 122 deaths. (dfr)