03/16/2020, 09.22
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Jakarta has 117 coronavirus infections. Widodo: 'Stay home'

by Mathias Hariyadi

The president calls on the population to remain productive and avoid panic.  Transport minister Budi Karya Sumadi tests positive for Covid-19.  No state of emergency: the president delegates the measures to the districts of the nation.  The governor of Jakarta closes schools and reduces transportation.



Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Indonesia's confirmed cases of Covid-19 infection are increasing and have reached 117, confirms Achmad Yurianto, government coronavirus emergency spokesman and director general of the Health Ministry Department for Disease Control and Prevention (P2p) . 

Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo advises citizens to work from home and government ministers are no exception.  Widodo held a video conference this morning attended by his deputy Ma’aruf and the 41 cabinet members.  The government discussed an economic acceleration in response to the pressure created by the crisis.

Yesterday the president made a speech to the nation, inviting the population to remain productive and avoid panic.  His appeal followed the announcement that the transport minister, Budi Karya Sumadi, tested positive for the coronavirus.  “This condition [forces us] to work, study and pray at home.  This is the time when we have to work hand in hand to make this a national community movement that quickly solves the problem, "said Widodo from the Bogor presidential palace. 

Analysts believe the president has preferred not to declare the national emergency in order not to create chaos on a social and economic level.  However, he delegated the task of imposing adequate measures on the administrations of each district of the nation.

The measures launched by the governor of Jakarta, Anies Baswedan have sparked controversy.  He ordered the closure of schools and all entertainment activities operating in the metropolitan area for at least two weeks.  In addition, the governor has decided to drastically reduce public transport: starting today, only 13 lines will be active.  Service interruptions this morning caused a domino effect in the form of long lines in the stations and terminals of trains, subways and buses.

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