A man waits for a bus in Tangerang, Banten, on Saturday. (Antara Photo/Fauzan)

Jokowi's New Five-Point Plan Anticipates Second Wave of Pandemic


MAY 04, 2020

Bogor. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo on Monday announced a new five-point plan to handle the coronavirus pandemic in Indonesia, which has shown little sign of slowing down.

The first point of the plan is a thorough evaluation of the large-scale social restriction (PSBB) that has been in place in 12 districts and four provinces across the country.

"Several districts have already extended the PSBB. We need to evaluate which [rules] are effective and which ones aren't. We need the evaluation so we can make improvements," the president said in a teleconference during a limited cabinet meeting at Bogor Palace, 

Second, Jokowi said provinces and districts that impose the large-scale social restriction should set targets that are easily measurable.

The targets should include the number of rapid and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing to be conducted, aggressive contact tracing and strict isolation policies.

"I've heard about Covid-19 patients running away from the hospital, or [suspected Covid-19] patients under observation [PDP] remaining active [in their community]. They are a danger to others, especially to older people and people who suffer from other illnesses," Jokowi said.

Third, the president wanted stricter monitoring of migrant workers who had recently returned from overseas, pilgrims who attended a tabligh Islamic gathering in Gowa, South Sulawesi, on March 18, factory workers and people from urban centers who had returned to their hometown ahead of Idul Fitri. 

Jokowi said the central and regional governments must get ready for a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic. 

"Around 89,000 migrant workers have already returned to Indonesia and an additional 16,000 will arrive here shortly. We have to be able to manage them to avoid a second wave of the pandemic. We have to consider very carefully which industries should be allowed to remain open. Factory workers must be given a health check and [their employers] must follow our strict health protocols," the president said.

Fourth, Jokowi wanted the current social safety net program to reach low-income families this week.

The president had asked Social Affairs Minister Juliari Batubara and his staff to monitor the distribution of the program directly. 

Jokowi said regional heads should organize help for poor families who have not received the relief package. 

"Data on the social safety net recipients have to be made publicly available, as well as the criteria and the forms of assistance. We need to manage this relief package properly since it involves assistance from the central government, regional governments and at the village level," he said.

Lastly, Jokowi also wanted a new hotline to be established to process complaints about the government's handling of the pandemic.