President Jokowi Orders Speedy Evacuation for Victims of Natural Disasters in NTT, NTB
Date 6 April 2021
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has ordered his administration to accelerate the process of evacuating, searching for, and rescuing victims of natural disasters that ravaged the eastern Indonesian provinces of East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) and West Nusa Tenggara (NTB).
The two provinces have been hit by flash floods and landslides following an extreme weather due to Tropical Cyclone Seroja, which has hit many regions in Indonesia.
“I order Head of the National Agency for Disaster Management (BNPB), Head of the National Search and Rescue Agency, as well as Commander of the Indonesian Defense Armed Forces and Chief of the Indonesian National Police and all their ranks to assign more SAR personnel so they can cover more impacted regions, including isolated regions and many islands in East Nusa Tenggara, in Alor island, Pantar island, and other islands, to smoothen victim evacuation, search, and rescue process,” the President said in his directives during a limited meeting on disaster management in East Nusa Tenggara and West Nusa Tenggara provinces through video conference.
The President also ordered Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing to mobilize heavy equipment from many places to support the relief effort.
“If land routes are difficult to penetrate, I order for faster access opening through the sea and air,” he added.
The Head of State also instructed Minister of Health to immediately deploy medical support teams to the location to ensure the availability of medical service and aids needed by the victims.
“I also order Minister of Health to provide more medical service facilities on the ground, to prepare hospitals to treat the victims, and to ensure availability of health professionals and medicines,” he said.
The President also ordered related parties to immediately handle and fulfill the needs of refugees, from logistics to sanitation, adding that the Government has deployed aids to East Nusa Tenggara and West Nusa Tenggara provinces, but not all of the aids have reached the impacted locations due to extreme weather.
“I order the BNPB and regional governments to immediately record refugee shelters to ensure the logistics, tents, kitchens, to fulfill the basic needs of the refugees as well as babies and children, especially clean water and bathrooms,” he said.
On that occasion, the President also ordered acceleration of post-disaster supporting infrastructure recovery.
“For Minister of Public Works and Public Housing again, do accelerate recovery of damaged infrastructure. I saw several bridges collapsed and road access (have been disrupted) too. Do immediately recover power grid, telecommunication network, internet network, and distribute logistics and fuel, so aids can be distributed immediately to the victims of disaster,” he said.
Furthermore, the President ordered his Cabinet to anticipate potential disasters caused by extreme weather in many regions in Indonesia.
“I order the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) to intensify warnings of extreme weather due to Tropical Cyclone Seroja. Make sure that all heads of regions and the public can access, monitor the forecast of weather and climate issued by the BMKG. They must be aware of everything, so the public can be more alert and vigilant to prepare for the risks, including strong winds, floods, flash floods, and landslides,” he remarked. (FID/UN) (DH/EP)