A waiter cleans the dining table at Bebek Kaleyo restaurant in Jakarta on Oct. 12, 2020. (Antara Photo/Aprillio Akbar)

Gov't to Impose Stricter Restrictions in Several Cities in Java, Bali

BY :DWI ARGO SANTOSA, LONA OLAVIA

JANUARY 07, 2021

Jakarta. The government has decided to impose stricter restrictions in Java and Bali starting on Jan. 11 to Jan. 25, following the surge in new Covid-19 cases. Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto said in a statement on Wednesday.

Airlangga said the restriction on people's activities would only apply to several municipalities and districts in Java and Bali, including Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Yogyakarta, and Denpasar. 

"The restriction only applies in several municipalities and districts that meet the parameters, such as active cases, death rate, recovery rate, or hospital occupancy. This becomes a priority to curb the virus in these regions," Airlangga said the statement.

The country saw a new record high in Covid-19 infections with 8,854 cases on Wednesday, two weeks after the Christmas holiday. That brought the total number of cases to more than 788,400 cases. Should the number of total cases steadily grow at the current pace of 0.9 percent daily, the country would see a million total cases in less than a month, according to the Jakarta Globe projection. 

Home Affairs Minister Tito Karnavian had issued a ministerial instruction on the stricter restriction, which details the four-parameter and affected regions.

A region can restrict public activities if they meet one of the following parameters.

The first is if the death rate surpasses the national average. Followed by if the recovery late falls below the national average. The parameters also include if the active case rate is above the national average, and if the bed occupancy rate for ICU and isolation exceeds 70 percent.

The ministerial instruction stated all municipalities and districts in Jakarta will become a priority for this social restriction. In West Java are Bogor and Bekasi districts, Cimahi, Bogor, Depok, Bekasi municipalities, and the Greater Bandung area.

As for Banten, the government will prioritize both Tangerang district and the municipality and South Tangerang municipality. In Central Java are the metropolitan areas Greater Semarang and Banyumas, as well as Surakarta district and its surroundings. 

On Yogyakarta's priority list are Yogyakarta municipality and four districts, namely Bantul, Gunung Kidul, Sleman, Kulonprogo. East Java will prioritize Greater Surabaya and Greater Malang.

Furthermore, Badung district, Denpasar municipality, and its surroundings will become a priority for Bali's restriction.

The governor can expand the restrictions to other municipalities or districts in their region by considering the aforementioned parameters and other considerations to help with Covid-19 handling. According to Airlangga, the restriction is necessary to help recover the economy in these regions that are at high risk and can potentially become a virus epicenter.

"Efforts on maintaining the momentum for economic recovery must be accompanied with efforts to address the pandemic," Airlangga said.

Earlier Curfew, Shorter Capacity

Once the restriction is in effect, office attendance is limited to 25 percent of their capacity. 

Classes will remain online to prevent virus transmission. Essential sectors for basic needs will operate at 100 percent with health protocols.

Shopping malls will have an earlier curfew at 7.00 p.m. Restaurants must limit their capacity to 25 percent while take-aways and delivery orders can remain open. Constructions can run at full capacity under strict health protocols. Places of worship are restricted to 50 percent.

Also, the government will temporarily close public facilities. Transportation modes will also be further regulated.

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