Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto. (Photo courtesy of the Coordinating Ministry for Economic Affairs)

Indonesia Lifts Highest Covid-19 Alert Level after Surge Slows

BY :HERU ANDRIYANTO

SEPTEMBER 13, 2021

Jakarta. The Indonesian government announced on Monday that not a single province is now under the highest risk evel of the Covid-19 alert system amid a steady decline in new cases and deaths.

The confirmation came after the risk level in Bali, East Kalimantan and North Kalimantan was lowered from four to three.

However, the highest alert level will remain in place in nine out of 514 districts and cities across the country.

Among those districts and cities considered as having the highest risk of Covid-19 spread are Banda Aceh, Bangka, Medan, Kota Baru, Palangkaraya and Palu, Chief Economic Minister Airlangga Hartarto said in a video conference.

“But at the provincial level, there is no province under the level four,” Airlangga said.

The latest development allows further relaxation in community restrictions,

Speaking at the same conference, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said theaters are allowed to reopen with a 50 percent capacity limit.

But cinemagoers must show proof of vaccination on the Peduli Lindungi app, which was created by the government to record the vaccination status of every citizen, Luhut said.

Such a requirement has been imposed earlier when the government allowed reopening of shopping malls, public markets and restaurants.

Earlier this month, several cities began allowing in-person learning at elementary and high schools.

Luhut said efforts to curb public gatherings will continue, including by imposing odd-even traffic restriction at tourist spots. The traffic restriction is based on odd and even numbered registration plates of vehicles.

Both senior ministers are appointed by President Joko Widodo to lead Covid-19 response across the archipelago, with Luhut overseeing Java and Bali and Airlangga in charge of the rest.

The country of 272 million has recorded just 2,577 cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest daily tally since May 16. 

There have been 4.17 million Covid-19 cases in Indonesia, including 139,165 deaths, since the pandemic began.
 

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