Covid-19: Jakarta extends restrictions for two weeks, more surveillance at traditional markets and commuter trains

Surveillance would be tightened in some 300 traditional markets in Jakarta. PHOTO: REUTERS

JAKARTA - Indonesia's capital city, Jakarta, is extending restrictions for two weeks beginning Friday (July 3) with increased surveillance on traditional markets and commuter trains.

The two areas have been hit by a surge in infections of the coronavirus which causes Covid-19.

The city of around 10 million began to ease restrictions in early June and moved into what was called a "transition phase". Workplaces, places of worship, shopping centres and recreational venues reopened under strict health guidelines, which included operating at 50 per cent capacity and ensuring that people kept to safe distancing, or 1m from one another.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said on Wednesday (July 1) that the decision to extend the restrictive measures was in line with indicators of the University of Indonesia's public health team.

"Based on the meeting with the Covid-19 task force, the large-scale social restrictions in the transition phase will be extended, meaning that all activities can be carried out by maintaining 50 per cent capacity (at the venues)," he said, adding that the decision will be revisited in line with how the Covid-19 situation developed in the capital.

Dr Anies also disclosed that surveillance would be tightened in some 300 traditional markets, operated both by the city government and local communities as well as on commuter trains connecting the capital with its satellites.

He said that troops and police would be deployed to ensure adherence to the 50 per cent capacity rule.

Dr Anies, who was formerly education minister, underlined that there was still no plan to reopen schools soon although the new academic year will begin on July 13.

"Children are among the most exposed to the risk (of being infected)... At the start of the new academic year, distant learning is still applied," he said.

Jakarta reported 217 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday , bringing the total to 11,637. No one succumbed to Covid-19 yesterday leaving the total fatality rate at 632.

Indonesia has the most cases and deaths in South-east Asia. It reported 1,385 infections yesterday and the total number of cases stood at 57,770 cases. The number of fatalities rose by 58, bringing the total number of deaths in the country to 2,934.

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