Five COVID-19 suspects still isolated, waiting for conditions to improve: Ministry

first_img“We have to be really careful with these cases. We shouldn’t act rashly and discharge them early because they can create a new sub-cluster if they eventually test positive,” Yurianto said. During an earlier press briefing, Yurianto said the number of individuals with contact with Case 1 suspected of having the coronavirus was four. Later, he mentioned that seven were suspected, two of whom had tested positive while the other five were still under observation.The Health Ministry previously confirmed two new COVID-19 cases on Friday. The two patients, identified only as Case 3 and Case 4, were identified following the ministry’s effort to trace people who had encountered Case 1 and 2.Health officials later found seven people with contact with Case 1. They were taken to Sulianti Saroso Hospital because they showed physical symptoms associated with influenza, such as coughing and mild fever. Of the seven people, two tested positive for COVID-19.The government plans to continue tracing people suspected of having contact with Case 1 or 2 to prevent the emergence new subclusters. (dpk)Topics : Health authorities are still observing five individuals suspected of having been infected by the COVID-19 coronavirus after they had contact with the country’s first two confirmed cases.The five individuals were in close contact with the first two confirmed patients, identified only as Case 1 and Case 2. They had attended the same dance event as Case 1 in mid-February in Jakarta.Case 1 contracted the virus from a Japanese woman who tested positive in Malaysia in late February. The Health Ministry’s Disease Control and Prevention Directorate general secretary Achmad Yurianto said his office was waiting for the patients’ conditions to improve before discharging them from the hospital. The five patients are being treated in isolation at the Sulianti Saroso Infectious Diseases Hospital in North Jakarta.“We will wait until their physical condition improves, since some of them are still suffering from fever,” said Yurianto, who also serves as the spokesperson for coronavirus management, on Friday.Read also: 70 medical workers having contact with COVID-19 patients in Depok sent home for self-quarantineHe explained patients in other countries, such as Vietnam, had to undergo tests seven times during the observation period. The patients even tested positive for COVID-19 during an eighth test, which was followed by intensive treatment from medical personnel.last_img read more

Indonesian Military distributes 151,000 pieces of protective gear, 19,000 left at warehouse

first_imgThe Indonesian Military (TNI) has distributed 151,000 pieces of personal protective equipment to 34 provinces across Indonesia to help medical personnel in combating the spread of COVID-19.With the distribution, 19,000 items remain in stock as of Friday from the initial 170,000, said a commissioned officer of the military’s internal operations, Col. Inf. Aditya Nindra Pasha.He went on to say that most of the equipment, as many as 40,000 items, had been delivered to Jakarta, considering that the city was the epicenter of COVID-19 infections in the country.  Another 20,000 items have been sent to the second hardest-hit province, West Java. “All equipment was distributed between March 23 and 26, from a national warehouse in Halim Perdanakusuma Air Force Base [in East Jakarta],” said Aditya in a press conference on Friday.He also said that the 151,000 items also included 20,000 pieces of protective gear to be allocated to 10 provinces but had yet to be distributed. The provinces include Riau, Jambi, Bengkulu, Gorontalo and Central Sulawesi.  Read also: COVID-19: Protective gear delivered to medical workers to alleviate scarcityWith the decrease in supply, the military will focus on distributing the remaining items to provinces with poor connectivity, as well as regions bordering neighboring countries, said Aditya. “The amount of distributed equipment to each province was based on their request, so we hope that regional administrations can determine which regions in their provinces need the equipment the most,” he added.Since mid-February, Indonesia’s health workers, doctors and nurses have been working overtime to treat COVID-19 cases, despite many of them having inadequate personal protection. Many of the medical workers were found to have worn makeshift personal protection gear, including raincoats, in lieu of hazmat suits. A medical worker at a hospital in Bogor, West Java, who asked to remain anonymous, said about a week ago that the Bogor administration had issued a circular urging medical workers at community health centers (Puskesmas) and hospitals to wear protective gear after the city declared a state of an extraordinary case of COVID-19.“But it’s very hard for us, medical workers, to obtain the equipment and we’ve been wearing raincoats until now,” he told The Jakarta Post on Friday. “We just hope that the equipment will be evenly distributed,” he added. (glh)Topics :last_img read more

China’s Wuhan raises coronavirus death toll by 50% citing early lapses

first_imgThe revision follows widespread speculation that Wuhan’s death toll was significantly higher than reported.Rumors of more victims have for weeks been fuelled by pictures of long queues of family members waiting to collect ashes of cremated relatives and reports of thousands of urns stacked at a funeral home waiting to be filled.”In the early stage, due to limited hospital capacity and the shortage of medical staff, a few medical institutions failed to connect with local disease control and prevention systems in a timely manner, which resulted in delayed reporting of confirmed cases and some failures to count patients accurately,” state broadcaster CGTN quoted an unidentified Wuhan official as saying.Suspicion that China has not been transparent about the outbreak has risen in recent days, with U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday expressing skepticism about its previously declared death toll of about 3,000. The Chinese city of Wuhan raised its death toll from the novel coronavirus by 50% on Friday, bringing its total to 3,869, amid doubts about the accuracy of China’s data on the disease as global cases mount.The central city where the virus first appeared in humans late last year added another 1,290 fatalities to the 2,579 previously counted as of Thursday, reflecting incorrect reporting, delays and omissions, according to a local government taskforce in charge of controlling the coronavirus.Reflecting the additional deaths in Wuhan, China revised up its national death toll later on Friday to 4,632. Topics :center_img “Do you really believe those numbers in this vast country called China, and that they have a certain number of cases and a certain number of deaths; does anybody really believe that?” he said.Some experts, however, believe fatality numbers in many other countries fail to show the real toll because some people have died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, without being tested or going to hospital, so are not included in coronavirus tallies.Wuhan’s total number of cases was revised up by 325, suggesting that some of the new deaths had been recorded as cases but not confirmed as fatalities, taking the total number of cases in the city of 11 million people to 50,333, or about 60% of mainland China’s total.Questions The topic “Wuhan revises its death toll” was one of the most read on China’s Weibo microblogging platform, which is heavily moderated.Many commentators praised the government for admitting its mistakes and correcting them, though some still questioned the numbers and one urged other provinces to reassess their data.Doctors and government officials in Wuhan have been repeatedly questioned about the accuracy of the death toll by journalists on government-arranged trips.Some of those officials acknowledged that people may have died without being counted in the chaotic early days of the outbreak, before testing was widely available.”There couldn’t have been many because that was a very short period,” Wang Xinghuan, head of one of two field hospitals built for the outbreak, told reporters in Wuhan on April 12. He stressed that he was not speaking for the government.Before the revised Wuhan numbers were released, China said it had recorded 26 new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday, down from 46 cases a day earlier, according to the National Health Commission.It brought the total number of cases in mainland China to 82,367.Of the new cases, 15 were imported infections, the lowest since March 17. The remaining 11 confirmed cases were locally transmitted, down from 12 a day earlier. The number of new asymptomatic cases increased to 66 from 64 a day earlier.China does not include patients with no clinical symptoms such as a cough or a fever in its tally of confirmed cases.No new deaths were reported.last_img read more

Amartha CEO steps down as presidential millennial staffer following controversy

first_imgAnother expert staffer of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, Andi Taufan Garuda Putra, has stepped down from his position following a conflict of interest controversy involving his own company, fintech lending startup PT Amartha Mikro Fintek.”I’ve submitted my resignation as a special staffer to the President on April 17, which he has subsequently approved,” Andi said in a public statement on Friday.Andi, who is also Amartha CEO, was recently in hot water after the public and politicians alike criticized him for writing a letter to district heads across the country, asking them to support a coronavirus relief program launched by his company. The request was printed on a document bearing the cabinet secretary’s letterhead.However, Andi did not mention the controversy in the public statement, instead saying his decision to step down was taken “based on my sincere desire to fully dedicate myself to the economic empowerment of the people, especially the small and micro businesses.”With his resignation, Andi has become the second millennial among Jokowi’s special staff to leave the State Palace after being hit by controversy.His colleague and former presidential aide Adamas Belva Syah Devara, the cofounder of education technology start-up Ruangguru, also announced on Tuesday that he had stepped down from the position. Belva said he had submitted his resignation letter to Jokowi on April 17.The Ruangguru CEO experienced a public backlash following the appointment of his company as one of eight government partners in the pre-employment card program, which was launched recently to augment the social safety net during the COVID-19 pandemic.Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung separately confirmed Andi’s resignation and said the President had accepted it.”The President appreciates [Andi’s] commitment to fully dedicate himself to the economic empowerment of the micro businesses. It’s in line with the President’s focus,” he said.Topics :last_img read more

Mandiri’s $500 million global bond oversubscribed by five times

first_imgThe debt paper was oversubscribed by almost five times with demand reaching more than $2.4 billion, the bank said in a statement on Wednesday.“Around 66 percent of the investors that bought the bond came from Asia, and the remaining 34 percent came from Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the United States,” the bank said in the statement.The bank said the global bond offered a coupon of 4.75 percent per year, higher than the government’s global bond coupon of 3.9 percent issued in April. The five-year debt paper, Bank Mandiri said, would mature in 2025.It is the second global bond issued by state-owned companies this month. On Monday, Hutama Karya successfully launched its first ever global bond of US$600 million with a coupon of 3.75 percent. The bond was also oversubscribed by six times from buyers amid high demand from investors in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the United States. Riska RahmanThe Jakarta Post/JakartaState-owned Bank Mandiri has successfully launched its US$500 million global bond as the demand from foreign investors, mostly from Asia and Europe, far exceeded the amount it offered. The bank’s treasury and international banking director Darmawan Junaidi told The Jakarta Post that the proceeds from the bond issuance would be used to strengthen its financing capacity.“It will also be used to support our business in the medium to long term,” he said via text message.He went on to say that the issuance of new bonds followed last year’s global bond issuance of US$750 million that was part of the bank’s global bond ticket of US$2 billion.State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir lauded Bank Mandiri’s global bond issuance amid the uncertain global economic conditions.“Investors’ high interest in the global bond shows that Indonesia has become one of the world’s most interesting investment destinations,” he said, adding that he also encouraged other SOEs to seek other sources of funding and not only rely on funding from banks.Bank Mandiri’s global bond issuance marks the second time SOEs have issued debt papers to the offshore market amid the COVID-19 pandemic.Topics :last_img read more

Idul Fitri falls on Sunday, government declares

first_imgThe government announced on Friday that the first day of Syawal month, which marks the Idul Fitri celebration, would fall on Sunday.All the major Islamic organizations in the country have endorsed the decision made during a limited isbat (confirmation) meeting held by the Religious Affairs Ministry with the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) and other related institutions in Jakarta.Several Islamic organizations attended Friday’s meeting via video conference.“After combining both the hisab [astronomical calculation] and rukyat [lunar movement observation] methods, we have concluded that Idul Fitri this year will fall on Sunday,” Religious Affairs Minister Fachrul Razi said.He added that Saudi Arabia would also celebrate the holy day on Sunday.The minister said that none of the observation teams deployed in 80 locations across the country had spotted the hilal (crescent moon) as of Friday evening.Read also: MUI, Muhammadiyah call for Idul Fitri prayers at homePrior to the announcement, the ministry’s astronomy expert, Cecep Nurwendaya, explained his calculation. “Based on the astronomical calculation, the moon sighted on Friday evening has yet to meet the criteria of a hilal,” he said.The head of House of Representatives Commission VIII overseeing religious and social affairs, Yandri Susanto, expressed his relief that the results of both the hisab and rukyat methods were aligned.“The Islamic organizations have also agreed to strengthen communication in the future so that we will consistently agree on the date of Idul Fitri,” he said.For years, the second-largest Islamic organization in the country, Muhammadiyah, had set different dates both for the start of the fasting month and for Idul Fitri.This year, however, Muhammadiyah had already announced in February that Idul Fitri would fall on May 24 based on their hisab calculation.As the moon was still below the horizon on Friday evening, the fasting month of Ramadan will be rounded up to 30 days.Read also: COVID-19: Jokowi cancels Idul Fitri open house event at State PalaceThis means Ramadan will end on Saturday, when Muslims are no longer fasting and performing tarawih (evening Ramadan prayers), and will celebrate Idul Fitri the next morning.However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MUI has advised Muslims in the country not to hold Idul Fitri prayers at mosques and other open spaces that involve a large mass of people.On May 13, the MUI issued a fatwa that allows Idul Fitri prayers to be performed at homes in the so-called COVID-19 red zones, or areas where the outbreak has spread uncontrollably. In areas where the virus is largely contained, prayers can be done normally.“However, we still strongly appeal to Muslims in green zones to pray at home to curb the spread of COVID-19. Even so, Idul Fitri prayer is sunnah [not obligatory],” MUI Fatwa Council chair Hasanuddin said, also pointing to the fact that even obligatory prayers such as Friday prayers had been avoided during the pandemic.Istiqlal Grand Mosque in Jakarta has decided to celebrate the eve of Idul Fitri virtually, with only five people attending the takbir (chants and praises) procession at the mosque while adhering to the COVID-19 precautions.“The takbir will be broadcast via the Istiqlal Mosque YouTube channel and [state-run television network] TVRI,” Istiqlal Mosque spokesperson Abu Hurairah said.Read also: Idul Fitri collective leave moved to December due to COVID-19After all, this year’s Ramadan has been embraced in a more tranquil manner than ever before, as the Religious Affairs Minister called on Muslims to avoid performing tarawih in congregations as well as visiting relatives’ graves (ziarah) and returning to their hometown for the mudik (exodus) tradition.Topics :last_img read more

Indonesia sees fewer natural disasters in first half of 2020: BNPB

first_imgThe National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) said the country witnessed fewer natural disasters in the first half of this year, with 1,549 disasters recorded as of June – fewer than 2,229 in the same period last year.The agency also recorded fewer fatalities caused by natural disasters, with 206 people having lost their lives in the last six months due to such disasters. Natural disasters claimed 479 lives throughout the first half of 2019.Moreover, natural disasters throughout the first half of this year injured 273 people and displaced 2.3 million residents. The disaster agency also recorded that such calamities damaged more than 22,000 buildings, including houses, places of worship, schools and health facilities. More than 99 percent of natural disasters occurring in the first half of 2019 were hydrometeorological disasters caused by atmospheric, hydrological and oceanographic phenomena, such as floods, droughts, putting beliung (small tornadoes) and high tides.“The most affected region was Central Java with 332 disasters, followed by West Java with 290, East Java 205, Aceh 151 and South Sulawesi 86,” BNPB spokesperson Raditya Jati said in a statement on Wednesday.Read also: New bill mandates 2 percent state budget allocation for disaster mitigation The COVID-19 pandemic complicated disaster mitigation efforts in the country, especially in areas with a high number of confirmed cases. “This calls for extra readiness and anticipatory measures by all parties, so we can avoid COVID-19 transmission upon responding to the emergency situation,” said Raditya.Floods made the headlines this year, as they were still inundating several regions in Sulawesi and Kalimantan as of late June.Jakarta also saw widespread flooding on New Year’s Eve and in February due to record-breaking rainfall in the capital and its surrounding areas. The location for the country’s future capital city, North Penajam Paser regency in East Kalimantan, was also inundated by floodwater in February, affecting at least 422 residents.Flash floods caused by an overflow of the Bone River in Gorontalo in June had forced residents of Bone Bolango regency and Gorontalo municipality to take shelter away from their homes.Topics :last_img read more

China rules out hosting most international sport in 2020

first_imgThe General Administration of Sport (GAS) said in a statement that, except for Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic test events “and other important events, in principle, no other international sports events will be held this year”.China’s highest sporting authority did not specify which competitions will be hit, but the official Xinhua news agency said that “lots of international sport events will be affected”.This year’s global sporting calendar has been badly disrupted by the pandemic, with the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Euro 2020 football pushed back to next summer.China was earmarked to host a number of tennis tournaments later this year in a revised schedule. Topics : The Chinese Super League (CSL) football season was due to kick off on February 22 but became one of the earliest sporting victims of the pandemic when it was indefinitely postponed in January.The CSL will now begin on July 25 under a different format in which the 16 teams will be split into two groups located in two cities to stop any infections spreading.It follows the return of the Chinese Basketball Association competition last month — the first major league to return to action in the country following the coronavirus outbreak.Like in the CBA, CSL games will take place behind closed doors. China will not hold most international sporting events for the rest of 2020 as part of measures to stop the spread of coronavirus, the government said Thursday, dealing a potential blow to the likes of Formula One and tennis.Shanghai’s sports authority recently said that it had been offered two Formula One races this year, while several tournaments in China are on the revised tennis calendar.But China — where coronavirus emerged late last year before spreading globally — appears to have ruled out many of those now happening, despite local infections dwindling markedly. That includes the WTA Wuhan Open in October — the central city was the original epicentre of the pandemic and staging the annual tournament would be hugely symbolic.The fate of the Wuhan Open and season-ending WTA Finals has now been thrown into grave doubt, along with the prestigious ATP Shanghai Masters which would usually take place in the autumn.last_img read more

Jakarta back under PSBB, but less strict than before

first_imgThe Jakarta administration has decided to reimpose large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) starting on Monday, but the curbs are more relaxed than when they were first implemented in April, leading experts to doubt the policy will bring down cases and deaths in the capital.Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said at a press conference on Sunday that the measure would last for two weeks and could be extended.Workplaces in 11 essential sectors – including health, food, energy, communications, finance, logistics and daily needs retail – will be allowed to remain open at 50 percent of capacity, while private companies outside these sectors as well as government offices must implement work-from-home policies and allow no more than 25 percent of their employees to work in the office at the same time. “We’re now seeing cases emerge mostly from offices. That’s why, for the PSBB starting on Sept. 14, our main focus will be on restrictions in office areas,” he said.Some of these restrictions were more relaxed than the first time the city imposed the PSBB in April, when all places of worship had to be closed, malls and markets were allowed to open only for essential daily needs and nonessential companies had to get an Industrial Ministry permit to operate.”There’s no difference to the past six months. I’m confused as to how they could distinguish between the 25 and 50 percent capacity,” Masdalina Pane of the Indonesian Epidemiologists Association (PAEI) said.She expressed doubt that the measure would reduce COVID-19 transmissions, saying that now, with new cases reaching thousands, all people in the affected areas should be required to stay at home. “During the PSBB in Jakarta, there could be people traveling to their hometowns, and when the PSBB is lifted, they’ll come back to Jakarta. This has been happening repeatedly over the past six months; adding new cases in other regions […]. When Jakarta sees declining cases, they’ll rise again. This is what’s called ping-pong transmission,” Masdalina said.Under the reimposed PSBB, travelers will not need to provide the previously required exit and entry permits (SIKM), while app-based motorcycle taxis, previously allowed only to carry goods, now may still carry passengers, provided they abide by health protocol, although a separate Transportation Agency regulation is to regulate the matter further.Public transportation will be limited to 50 percent of passenger capacity, and the odd-even license plate traffic policy will be suspended for the duration of the PSBB.Read also: 50 days of Indonesia’s partial lockdown. Is it enough for the ‘new normal’?The government’s spokesperson for all things COVID-19, Wiku Adisasmito, said during the press briefing that Jakarta’s decision to reimpose the full PSBB had been coordinated with the national COVID-19 task-force and the central government.Anies announced the return to full PSBB on Wednesday, citing an increasing number of daily new COVID-19 cases and a decreasing number of free hospital beds. The announcement sparked concerns over the country’s economy among many, from government officials to the business community.President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said the plan should be “well and cautiously calculated”.One of Indonesia’s richest men, Budi Hartono of tobacco company Djarum, sent a letter to the President on Friday expressing his objection to the plan and citing data that, he said, showed that “the PSBB policy has proven ineffective in reducing infections in Jakarta”.A biostatistics researcher at the University of Indonesia’s (UI) School of Public Health, Iwan Ariawan, who has been analyzing data for Jakarta, said that, during the first full PSBB, cases had in fact been on the decline, but spiked again afterward, when the city entered the so-called transition phase.Iwan said his team’s analysis since April showed that, as the proportion of people staying at home since April dropped, there was a rise in estimated new cases per day.His team used mobility data from Cuebiq mobility insights and UNICEF and Jakarta’s daily data on new cases based on reported symptom onset, concluding that, when fewer than 50 percent of Jakarta’s residents stayed at home, there was an estimated increase of 100 cases a day for every 1 percent reduction in the share of those staying at home.When the proportion was between 55 percent and 65 percent, as observed during the full PSBB, there was no difference in daily cases at around 140 cases per day.Read also: Jakarta gears up for possible collapse of healthcare systemIwan expressed doubt that the new PSBB phase would lift the proportion of people staying at home to the desired 60 percent to suppress transmission. In that case the government had to ensure that at least 85 percent of the people who do not stay at home follow health protocol regarding face masks, frequent handwashing and social distancing, Iwan said, citing studies conducted abroad.”If things run just the way they do now, it won’t be enough. There need to be stronger efforts in communicating and raising people’s awareness, as well as in enforcement,” he said.But even such restrictions and health campaigns, experts said, would not be enough to reduce transmission without improved isolation and contact-tracing.Iwan said the Health Ministry’s protocol had to be changed to require that all close contacts be tested right away, rather than just being advised to self-isolate for 14 days, and even if isolation was suggested, there should be tighter monitoring.Topics :last_img read more

From sweeping to digging, Indonesia gets creative in handling violators of COVID-19 protocols

first_imgAs the COVID-19 pandemic continues to claim more lives across the country, many provinces have issued stringent health regulations and imposed hefty penalties on violators to ensure public compliance with existing coronavirus protocols.However, a number of regions have gone the extra mile and devised all-new sanctions for those who fail to abide by health protocols, such as various forms of community service and other unusual tasks.The Jakarta Post has compiled a list of rather unorthodox penalties imposed by several regional administrations across the archipelago to ensure public compliance with COVID-19 protocols as of the time of writing. Lhokseumawe Police head Adj. Sr. Comr. Eko Hartanto said about 100 locals had been instructed to pull weeds around the public park after they were caught without a mask.“After they pulled weeds, we gave them free masks. We keep a record of their identities to prevent them from repeating the offense,” Eko said on Monday as quoted by kompas.com.The sanction, he said, was stipulated in Lhokseumawe Mayoral Regulation No. 24/2020.As per the regulation, residents who are repeatedly found without a mask will be denied administrative services.As of Wednesday, Aceh has recorded 3,127 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 115 deaths.Under the scorching sunThe South Tangerang administration in Banten has taken a no-nonsense approach against health protocol violators.According to its latest policy, residents found not wearing a mask are subject to sanctions that test their physical endurance, exposing them to the scorching hot sun and doing an 800-meter sprint.Around 30 residents were caught without masks during a local Satpol PP inspection in Nusa Loka, Serpong, on Wednesday.South Tangerang Satpol PP investigation and enforcement head Muksin Al Fachry said some people who had masks did not wear them properly.“Some ‘sunbathed’ for 30 minutes, while others were told to sprint 200 meters four times and do 10 push-ups,” Muksin said, adding that he expected such sanctions to bring a deterrent effect against violators.South Tangerang Deputy Mayor Benyamin Davnie previously said the administration had recorded a decrease in public adherence to health protocols in recent weeks.As of Wednesday, Banten has recorded 3,774 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 119 deaths.Clean up, clean upSeveral motorists in Duren Sawit, East Jakarta found themselves caring more for the surrounding environment than they may usually do as they were told to sweep the ground after they were found to have violated the mask-wearing protocol by local authorities.Dimas Adikumara, a 29-year-old resident of Bekasi, West Java, was among those who were penalized during a traffic inspection in Duren Sawit on Wednesday.He chose to sweep the grounds along the Kalimalang riverbank for an hour rather than pay a Rp 250,000 (US$16.69) fine for improperly wearing a mask.Jakarta Police traffic division deputy director Adj. Sr. Comr. Hari Purnomo said some mask-wearing motorists had failed to comply with Article 4 of Gubernatorial Regulation No. 79/2020, which stipulates that a mask must cover one’s nose, mouth and chin.As of Wednesday, Jakarta has recorded 57,469 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 1,481 deaths.Public Order Agency (Satpol PP) officers handle COVID-19 protocols violators by telling them to clean a river during a raid in Banjarsari, Surakarta, Central Java on Sept. 16. (Antara/Mohammad Ayudha)Sitting in a hearse alongside casketThe Probolinggo COVID-19 task force in East Java has ordered dozens of people at Maron Market to get into a hearse containing a casket used for transporting COVID-19 patients’ bodies after they were caught not wearing a mask.Some 50 sellers and customers took turns to stay in the ambulance for several minutes on Sept. 8 as a social punishment.”We punished 50 sellers and customers at Maron Market by making them stay in a hearse,” said the task force’s security and law enforcement coordinator, Ugas Irwanto.Prior to entering the hearse, the task force gave the violators face masks.Inside the hearse, Ugas added, violators were asked to reflect on their actions. The task force also reminded them how the COVID-19 pandemic had taken a lot of lives.As of Wednesday, East Java has recorded 39,181 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 2,867 deaths.Grave-diggingEight people in Gresik regency, East Java, were ordered by local authorities to dig graves for those who have died of COVID-19 as punishment for not wearing face masks in public on Sept. 10.Cerme district head Suyono said residents who did not wear face masks were punished with the task of digging graves at a public cemetery in Ngabetan village.“There are only three available gravediggers at the moment, so I thought I might as well put these people to work with them,” Suyono told tribunnews.com.To assist the gravediggers, Suyono assigned two people to each grave. One was tasked with digging the grave, while the other laid wooden boards inside the hole to support the corpse.“Hopefully this can create a deterrent effect against violations,” Suyono said.Based on the Regent Law No. 22/2020, residents who violate the protocols are subject to fines or community service as punishment. (rfa)Topics : Keeping the park tidyLocal residents in Lhokseumawe, Aceh, who violate COVID-19 health protocols are ordered to clean a city park by pulling the weeds by local authorities on Sept. 14. (Kompas.com/Masriadi)Residents of Lhokseumawe, Aceh, who do not wear a face mask in public could find themselves cleaning up a local park by pulling weeds as a form of administrative sanction.A joint team of the Lhokseumawe Public Order Agency (Satpol PP), National Police and Indonesian Military (TNI) carry out inspections around Taman Hidayah near Simpang Empat on Monday to ensure compliance with the administration’s mask-wearing rule.last_img read more