The Jakarta Post
The government has claimed that Jakarta, the country’s epicenter of COVID-19, has flattened the curve and experienced a significant slowdown in new cases, hoping to see an end the national outbreak in July.
“We can explain in the latest development that particularly for Jakarta, the new cases have rapidly slowed down and flattened,” said COVID-19 task force chief Doni Monardo after a limited meeting with President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on Monday.
Doni, who also heads the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), said the result was contributed by the implementation of large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) imposed in the capital city.
"The PSBB is running effectively. The Jakarta governor has also reported the results of the implementation to the President," he said.
The Jakarta administration was the first in the country to impose 14-day PSBB measures on April 10. Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan’s request for an extension was approved and will last until May 22.
Doni further said that Indonesia had seen a decrease in the number of COVID-19 patients under treatment and currently 7,032 people were being treated, compared to 10,179 isolation room beds available nationwide.
He conceded, however, that the number of positive cases outside the capital had increased and called for regional governments to apply strict measures on visitors entering their respective areas with a compulsory 14-day self-isolation period and strict health protocols.
To get a clearer picture of Indonesia’s COVID-19 situation, the government has secured 479,000 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) reagents from South Korea and China, in line with Jokowi’s order to expedite massive testing in April and in May, as well as aggressive tracking and strict isolation.
“Pak President asked all of us to work even harder and encourage communities to be more disciplined and officials to be stricter, so we can start going back to a normal life again in July,” Doni added.
Many, however, have doubted the Health Ministry’s data on the number of confirmed cases in the country, arguing there has been a lack of transparency and sluggish tests and tracking since the first announcement of infected cases in March.
BNPB spokesperson Agus Wibowo said the Health Ministry had supplied limited data to the agency and the government’s data had conflicted with that provided by regional administrations.
The government has reported 9,096 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 765 fatalities in Indonesia as of Monday.