Directives of President of the Republic of Indonesia on the Integrated Handling of COVID-19 in Aceh Province, Tuesday, 25 August 2020 at COVID-19 Handling Post, Aceh Governor Banda Aceh, Aceh Province
Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.
First and foremost, I would like to extend my highest gratitude and appreciation to Governor of Aceh, distinguished Wali Nanggroe (traditional leaders), Speaker of Aceh Legislative Council (DPRA) and all Regents, Mayors, the Task Force, doctors, nurses, community leaders, volunteers, the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI), the Indonesian National Police (Polri), Territorial Military Commander (Pangdam), and Regional Police Chief (Kapolda) for your hard work. All of you have worked around the clock to control the spread of COVID-19 in Aceh Province.
We are aware that there have been 23.8 million cases in 215 countries or almost all countries worldwide are affected. To date, mortality rate has stood at 816 thousand people. All of us should be grateful, alhamdulillah that in Aceh province the total number of cases to this day, as I received reports from the Governor has reached 1,241 cases. This is still a small number, but do not let it rise. There are 30 new cases and 191 recoveries. Although the number of cases is relatively small, I order the provincial TNI Commander and the provincial Police Chief to assist the Governor regarding the campaigns to wear face mask, to maintain physical distance, to regularly wash hands, and to avoid public gathering. The public must be regularly reminded about health protocols.
We know how dangerous it is if we do not wear a face mask and if we gather in large numbers. Discipline to follow health protocols is pivotal before vaccine is widely available. InsyaAllah, we have sealed a commitment from the United Arab Emirates and China to secure a total of 290 million doses of vaccine, which InsyaAllah mostly will be produced in Indonesia and some of them will be produced overseas. I hope, InsyaAllah, the vaccine will be available in January next year.
I would like to reiterate that the COVID-19 pandemic is still posing a threat. I hope that crisis management will be carried out in every management unit. First, if one region wants to open its region, do take into account the precondition, do not just open it. It applies to whether you want to open a tourist destination or a certain sector. Second, timing and calculation must be taken into account. For example, do not just open the region tomorrow morning. Third, sector priority. This is very important; which sector will be the first priority. Areas with the lowest risk are given the first priority, followed by the one with the highest risk. If we take this measure strictly, insyaallah, the number of cases in the province will continue to drop and there will be zero cases in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam Province.
I also remind all of you that apart from health problems, economic problems must not be neglected. The control and preventive actions must be properly conducted by the Governor and the staff. All countries are also seeing a disruption in productions, supplies, and demands. Thus, our economy is indeed in a bad position, but all countries are also experiencing it, particularly countries that have their economy locked down to minus 17%, minus 21%, minus 20%. Alhamdulillah, we must be grateful that in the first quarter, our economic growth stood at 2.97%, but in the second quarter it contracted to 5.3% following the implementation of large-scale social restrictions (PSBB). It is our hope that in the third quarter, we can do more than the first quarter so we can rebuild the economy.
Hence, matters relating to social assistance and economic stimulus must be properly reviewed by the Governor, Regents, and Mayors. As for social assistance, it will be distributed through direct cash assistance for villages (BLT Desa), cash assistance, the family hope program (PKH), non-cash staple food assistance (BPNT) for basic necessities, electricity subsidies free of charge fro 450 VA households. Regarding productive presidential assistance (banpres) to micro and small businesses amounting to Rp2.4 million, it will be directly transferred to the recipients’ bank accounts. We provide the assistance to 12 million business players from Sabang to Merauke, from Miangas to the Island of Rote. It is expected that the economy will return to normal through provision of economic stimulus.
Once again, do not let the number of 1,241 cases rise. And indeed, the most effective strategy from several provinces, regencies/cities is a local-based intervention strategy. Therefore, it is easier to manage the PSBB at the village level.
That concludes my remarks on this auspicious occasion.
I thank you.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.
Translated by Syarifah Aisyah
Reviewed by Muhardi