President Jokowi Highlights Importance of Central and Regional Gov’t Cooperation in Handling COVID-19
Date 6 April 2020
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has once again underscored the importance of cooperation between the central and regional governments in the fight against COVID-19.
“Communication between central and regional governments must be maintained so that all of us have one vision and one common line in containing COVID-19,” the President said in his introductory remarks on an online limited meeting, at the Merdeka Palace, Jakarta, Monday (6/4).
On the enforcement of Large-Scale Social Restrictions (PSBB), President Jokowi also underlined the importance of speed to contain the COVID-19 spread.
“I notice that we already have Minister of Health Regulation Number 9 0f 2020. Most importantly, I want to ask several questions, especially on the implementation of the regulation to prevent and break the chain of COVID-19 spread,” the President stated.
To prevent the acceleration of COVID-19 spread in prisons, President Jokowi explained his stance on the parole of inmates.
“In other countries, I notice for example Iran that has released 95,000 inmates, Brazil has released 34,000 inmates. Other countries have also done the same. We agreed last week to release inmates because our prisons have over capacity and it is very risky,” he added.
However, the President stated that the inmates should not be released unconditionally and that conditions, criteria, and supervision should be applied.
“We have never talked about graft inmates in our meetings. On Government Regulation Number 99 of 2012, I need to say that there is no amendment. The release is only for those committing general criminal,” he said.
The President also said he had instructed that the PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) test is prioritized for the people with a high-risk of infection, including medical doctors and their families, the PDP (Patients Under Treatment) and the ODP (People Under Surveillance).
“The speed of examination in the laboratory should be increased. With that speed, we expect to find out who have tested positive and who have tested negative,” President Jokowi said.
Furthermore, the President said that the speed on the procurement and distribution of PPE and medical equipment required by hospitals should also be a concern.
“We have distributed PPEs and medical equipment to several provinces, but those provinces should be monitored to ensure that they have distributed the PPEs and medical equipment to the hospitals,” he said.
On the WHO recommendation that everyone should wear face masks, the President instructed the distribution of face masks to the people.
“We want to ensure that the citizens who leave their house will wear a face mask. Previously, the WHO explained that only those who are not in a good health should wear face a face mask, but now everyone who leaves house should wear a face mask,” he said.
President Jokowi also stressed the importance of educating the people that there are currently 207 countries affected by the pandemic in order to raise their awareness.
“The information about the 10 countries with the highest cases should be disseminated,” he said, while asking for updates on the percentage of regencies, provinces and cities that have carried out budget reallocation and budget refocusing.
“This is very important, especially related to social safety net to ensure that they can be distributed immediately to the people,” he concluded. (FID/EN).
Translated by: Fairuzzamani Inayatillah
Reviewed by: M. Ersan Pamungkas