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Indonesia to limit people's mobility as study warns of surge in coronavirus deaths

Selasa, 31 Maret 2020 / 07:31 WIB
Indonesia to limit people's mobility as study warns of surge in coronavirus deaths
ILUSTRASI. Layar menampilkan rapat terbatas (ratas) melalui konferensi video yang dipimpin Presiden Joko Widodo dari Istana Bogor di ruang wartawan Istana Kepresidenan, Jakarta, Senin (30/3/2020). Presiden Joko Widodo memimpin dua ratas yakni antisipasi mudik lebara

Sumber: Reuters | Editor: Yudho Winarto

KONTAN.CO.ID - JAKARTA. Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on Monday he planned stricter rules on mobility and social distancing as a study presented to the government warned that more than 140,000 people could die from the coronavirus by May unless it takes tougher action.

Medical experts have said the world's fourth most populous country must impose tighter movement restrictions as known cases of the highly infectious respiratory illness have gone from zero in early March to 1,414, with 122 deaths.

Indonesia accounts for nearly half of the 250 deaths reported across Southeast Asia, but some officials and experts believe a lack of testing has masked the scale of the outbreak.

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Most infections in Indonesia have been concentrated in and around the capital Jakarta. The city of 10 million has declared a state of emergency, shutting down schools and public entertainment, but so far there has been no full public lockdown which the president has been reluctant to impose.

"I'm ordering large-scale social limits, physical distancing needs to be done more sternly, more disciplined, and effectively," Widodo told a cabinet meeting, stressing that only the central government could decide on regional quarantines.

Jakarta governor Anies Baswedan said on Monday he had asked Widodo to approve a regional quarantine, "effectively a lockdown" for Jakarta.

He told Reuters he doubted the central government's death tolls and had been informed by hospitals that 283 patients had died of a "contagious disease" but were treated with "Covid-19 protocols".

"There's a backlog in testing and limited numbers of people being tested," Baswedan said, asking central authorities to act with more urgency.

"The hospitals have been informing us that patients had contagious disease', but they are not saying COVID19."

Official data puts the death toll in Jakarta at 74.