The situation in Jakarta has calmed on Thursday with residents of Tanah Abang, where some of the worst clashes between rioters and police occurred on Wednesday, trying to resume their normal activities. (Antara Photo/Indrianto Eko Suwarso)
No More Demonstrations Expected as Cleanup Continues
BY :BAYU MARHAENJATI & NUR YASMIN & CARLOS ROY FAJARTA
MAY 23, 2019
Jakarta. Police have confirmed that it had not received any notice of plans to stage a rally in Jakarta on Thursday, assuaging residents' concerns after violent protests in the city over the past two days.
"Today there are none, but there's a possibility of parties who could wildly come and run amok," Jakarta Police chief Insp. Gen. Gatot Eddy Pramono said.
In anticipation, officers remained on alert at crucial points where rioting occurred on Wednesday, including the offices of the Election Supervisory Agency (Bawaslu) in Central Jakarta.
The situation in the capital has calmed on Thursday with residents of Tanah Abang, where some of the worst clashes between rioters and police occurred on Wednesday, trying to resume their normal activities.
"Until now, it is relatively calm. There are no problems in sight," Gatot said.
He advised protestors to convey their aspirations responsibly or face legal consequences.
"Convey your aspirations, but not in a violent manner, it's not justified by law and could result in legal sanctions," the police chief said.
Nearly 260 protestors participating in the May 22 rally have been arrested after attacks on police facilities and damage to property in West and Central Jakarta.
Unsuccessful presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto has called on his supporters to abstain from committing acts of violence.
Meanwhile, the leaders of Bawaslu surveyed the area around their offices after the past two days' rioting.
"We continue to carry out our duties and responsibilities, such as receiving reports as part of a public service. We keep scheduling court session and receiving reports from the public on the administration of the election," said Abhan, the head of Bawaslu, accompanied by four commissioners.
Bawaslu commissioner Ratna Dewi Pettalolo said five hearings were supposed to have taken place over the past three days, but had to be postponed until Monday.
Business activities in the area have resumed, although some establishments, such as the Sarinah shopping center and Djakarta Theater XXI, have yet to reopen.
Some people working in the Thamrin area handed roses to police officers resting on the side of the road while recovering from exhaustion after Wednesday night's riots.
Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan was also seen monitoring the cleanup process around the Bawaslu offices.
"Since dawn, all provincial government teams have worked to ensure that the Thamrin area is clean once more. There are still a lot of garbage and some facilities need repair. We'll continue this afternoon until late. We want the entire Jalan M.H. Thamrin to be restored to its original condition," he said.