The Banten administration has extended the large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) in Tangerang municipality, Tangerang regency and South Tangerang – three regions near Jakarta – until June 28.
The 14-day extension took effect on Monday, according to a gubernatorial decree signed on Sunday, as reported by kompas.com.
The provincial administration has extended the restrictions for the fourth time due to the high number of new COVID-19 cases in the region. First imposed on April 18, the region previously extended the PSBB from May 31 to June 14.
"There must be stricter monitoring as well as sanctions,” Governor Wahidin Halim said in a statement on Monday.
He added that the administration would still call the policy “PSBB” rather than “transitional PSBB” – as in Jakarta – to avoid confusion among residents.
“The most important thing is that there must be awareness on wearing masks, staying at home and bringing personal healthcare and protection items [whenever going outdoors].”
Tangerang Mayor Arief Wismansyah said the governor had made the decision because of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in greater Tangerang.
According to the Banten administration, there were 1,141 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Banten as of Monday. Of the total cases, 436 were found in Tangerang municipality, while 346 and 234 were found in South Tangerang and Tangerang regency, respectively.
Apart from the number of cases, the decision to prolong the PSBB was based on the lack of awareness among residents about health protocol.
In South Tangerang, the city’s Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) disciplined 12 people found not adhering to health protocol. They were found gathering in a restaurant in Serpong on Monday evening without wearing masks and ignoring physical distancing measures.
"They were ordered to sing the national anthem Indonesia Raya and recite five principles of Pancasila," South Tangerang Satpol PP official Sapta Mulyana said as quoted by kompas.com.
He added that the 12 had failed to sing the national anthem and recite Pancasila correctly.
In Tangerang municipality, people living in red zones with high COVID-19 cases are required to obtain an exit and entry permit (SIKM) issued by community unit heads.
The Tangerang mayor has issued a decree stipulating sanctions for PSBB violators that range from social sanctions to a maximum Rp 25 million (US$1,784) fine.
Wahidin asserted that schools under the authority of the provincial administration would reopen in December or January next year. School activities would remain suspended during the PSBB period. (trn)