Luhut Calls for Social Distance to Curb Coronavirus Spread



Petir Garda Bhwana

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Luhut Pandjaitan called on the public to maintain social distance in a bid to minimize the coronavirus contagion.

    "I hope all people pay attention to this. Don't stand near each other as it may trigger the virus transmission," Luhut said in a video conference on Wednesday, March 18.

    According to him, the spread of the virus could rise dramatically if the public was not disciplined, for example, by making contact with others, not making a report when feeling ill, "such as coughing, shortness of breath, or rising temperatures (symptoms of the virus disease or COVID-19). This is dangerous. We must discipline ourselves," Transportation Ad Interim Minister asserted.

    Luhut said the government was preparing contingency plans related to religious activities until the emergency period of the virus outbreak ends. He also ordered the Ministry of Transportation to prepare various alternatives in light of the Eid homecoming period during the emergency status.

    "The month of fasting (Ramadan) will come soon, the government will discuss this. I have already instructed the Ministry of Transportation to prepare options," Luhut added.

    He estimated that the discussion about Eid homecoming or Lebaran will be discussed with President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo during a cabinet meeting. "This will be held soon and we will talk to the MUI (Indonesian Ulema Council)," he said.

    As reported earlier, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) extended the emergency status of the coronavirus outbreak until May 29, 2020.