TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - A member of Commission III of the House of Representatives (DPR) Nasir Djamil, questioned the urgency behind President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's suggestion to announce a civil emergency status in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Nasir asserted that the President's idea mirrors an authoritarian approach instead of relying on organizational functions.
"Moreover, there is no assurance that regional heads in Indonesia has the capacity to exercise regional civil emergency authority," said Nasir to Tempo on Monday, March 30, 2020.
The Prosperity and Justice Party (PKS) politician argued that announcing a civil emergency status can potentially violate basic human rights. Nasir also reminded the President to be prudent and critical against every suggestion that he receives.
Nasir said that declaring a civil emergency status may be tempting because it provides full authority to civil officials.
"However, a civil emergency status indicates that the civil authorities have failed to handle an emergency with available instruments," Nasir explained.
Nasir highly recommends President Jokowi and his state-ministers to maximize the current level of authority granted by the Constitution in mitigating a national disaster before constructing a plan that perceives the lack of mitigation capabilities.