The Jakarta Post
The Transportation Ministry has ordered random checks on vehicles heading out of Jakarta to ensure every public transportation operator, including buses and private car users, adhere to health protocols.
The extra preparation is made ahead of the extended public holiday from Oct. 28 to Nov. 1 to prevent a major increase in COVID-19 cases.
“We will carry out random checks on vehicles to monitor their adherence to health protocols,” Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said on Friday as quoted by kompas.com.
“A bus that has a capacity of up to 42 passengers will only be allowed to carry 20 to 30 passengers. We will conduct random checking.”
Budi, who is a survivor of COVID-19, said it was also important for travelers to wear masks and to refrain from eating, drinking or chatting throughout their trip.
Budi Setiyadi, the ministry’s land transportation director general, said there would be strict supervision on roads throughout the long weekend.
"We will emphasize to the entire ranks of the Transportation Agency that the upcoming holiday is not only a matter of traffic but also the implementation of health protocols,” he said.
"The rules regarding health protocols for land transportation are clear. If our officers find any violations, they will not hesitate to enforce the law to strengthen COVID-19 prevention.”
The ministry expects more than 600,000 vehicles to travel out of Jakarta for the long weekend.
Separately, Home Affairs Minister Tito Karnavian issued a circular for regional leaders to anticipate COVID-19 transmission during the extended national holiday.
“Please translate this circular according to the local wisdom, characteristics of each region. Please take this to the Forkopimda meeting to make a decision, " Tito said during a virtual Regional Leadership Communication Forum (Forkopimda) coordination meeting on Thursday.
According to the minister, preventive measures against COVID-19 transmission during the long weekend must be carried out jointly by the regional heads and Forkopimda.
Regional heads were also instructed to coordinate with tourism players.
"Anticipate, identify and coordinate with all stakeholders: hotels, restaurants, tourist attractions and so on," Tito said.
The government, through its COVID-19 task force, has intensified the 3M (wearing masks, washing hands and keeping a distance) campaign to continuously remind the public that the spread of COVID-19 comes mainly from human mobility and interaction.(iwa)
Editor’s note: This article is part of a public campaign by the COVID-19 task force to raise people’s awareness about the pandemic.