Jakarta is Returning to Lockdown

Governor Anies Baswedan says Large-scale Social Restrictions (PSBB) will be reimposed next Monday.

Photo: Nikada/iStock

Starting on September 14, it will be mandatory for employees of non-essential sectors in Jakarta to work from home. As Covid-19 cases soared locally by the middle of last month, provincial governor Anies Baswedan warned that he would not hesitate to “pull an emergency brake” by reimposing strict coronavirus curbs should the situation worsen. The count of daily new infections in the Indonesian capital first surpassed 1,000 on August 30, and has consistently topped that number in the past four days.

At a virtual press briefing last night, Anies pointed to the latest health statistics, which showed 11,245 active cases in Jakarta and a steep rise of daily burials performed with infectious disease protocols over the past few weeks. He added that 77 percent of hospital beds for coronavirus patients across the capital were now occupied. Without reimposing lockdown measures, the governor explained, Covid-19 isolation wards in Jakarta would likely reach full capacity on September 17, while local hospitals could run out of ICU beds two days earlier. “There are not many options for Jakarta, except to pull the emergency brake as soon as possible,” Anies concluded.

According to multiple media outlets such as Kompas and detik.com, the Jakarta governor said lockdown measures would be the same as those rolled out during the six-week PSBB from the middle of April to early June. This means no large-scale public gatherings, a ban on dine-in services at restaurants, and the wholesale closure of tourist attractions. Public transportation will be limited and the odd-even traffic rule suspended.

Responding to journalists’ questions over whether his administration would restrict Jakarta’s road, rail, and air links, Anies said that would require further coordination with the surrounding cities and provinces. “Ideally we should limit the movement in and out of Jakarta to a minimum, but in reality this is not easy for Jakarta to enforce by itself,” he replied.

Share this Article