COVID-19 in Indonesia: many members of the Government have been infected

Jakarta reinforced the rules of social distancing since Indonesia is the tenth Asian country by COVID-19 number of cases. Many politicians turned out to be ill.

COVID-19 in Indonesia – Almost 252,923 positive and 9,837 dead. The Jakarta administration reinforces the rules of social distancing.  Governor Anies Baswedan criticized for its inconsistency: he allowed public funeral honours to personalities in the government of Greater Jakarta. Radical Islamic groups forced to find virtual ways for prayer meetings and gatherings.

COVID-19 in Indonesia: what’s the situation among the members of the Government?

Of particular concern are a large number of asymptomatic patients and the sudden worsening of some subjects, who died suddenly. An example of this is the case of the Secretary-General of the Special Province of Grande Jakarta, Selain Saifullah, who died on September 16 without having shown symptoms until moments before.

Despite the worrying spread of the virus, the governor of Jakarta Anies Baswedan had Saefullah’s body brought to the capital’s town hall in order to pay him a final solemn tribute. This choice aroused the protests of civil society, which on that occasion denounced a voluntary violation of social distancing.

Saifullah was just one of the many government men affected by the pandemic, which has hit hard a good part of the administration. Because of Covid-19, Ir Aptripel Tumimomor, governor of South Sulawesi Province, died; Congressman Edward Anthony of Way Kanan Regency and many mayors and local officials. In the last few days, the former General Fachrul Razi, Minister of Religious Affairs, and Prof. Arif Satria, Rector of the University of Bogor, have also been positive.

Baswedan is accused of total and voluntary ignorance of the new health protocol, called by him in the province on September 14. In fact, the text provides for a strict regulation regarding funerals, as well as imposing a ban on assembly and the obligation, for bars and diners, to carry out take-away activities. For restaurants that oppose this measure, a fine of 50 million Indonesian rupees (about 2882 euros) is foreseen at the first notice and a fine doubled to the second. On the web, however, videos of citizens who oppose this last measure are circulating, increasing the climate of tension and concern among citizens and workers in the capital.


Health measured to avoid spread of COVID-19 in Indonesia

In this regard, Father Samuel Pangestu, vicar of the Archdiocese of Jakarta, emphasizes the need to respect safety regulations, in order to avoid again the closure not only to commercial activities but also to churches.

As a result of the new protocol, even radical Islamic communities have been forced to rethink some moments of gathering. A public screening of the film The Betrayal of the 30 September Movement/Indonesian Communist Party, scheduled in these days, has been transformed into a virtual gathering, with projection on cell phones.

For September 30, the Islamic Defender Front (Fpi) had decided to hold a big event with khataman prayer [complete reading of the Koran] and then a munajat [prayer to God for blessing and forgiveness, help and guidance]. But the governor of Jakarta excluded that such a gathering could take place, given the high potential of coronavirus spread.




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