TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Indonesian Ombudsman claimed the inaction done by the government in allowing masks and other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) become scarce in the market to be maladministration.
"Allowing that condition where the needs of the people and health services are disrupted, is a maladministration," Ombudsman member Alamsyah Saragih said in a written statement, on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.
The Ombudsman had previously advised the central government to issue an export ban on these goods. According to Alamsyah, the Ombudsman has conveyed this message publicly on March 8, 202; asking the government to issue the ban as well as urging the government to set boundaries on the prices of goods, amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
Furthermore, Alamsyah believed that if the government acknowledged the high domestic demands for PPEs, the government should consider implementing a domestic market obligation policy; stipulating industries that produce the goods to focus their efforts in supplying the market.
The government, especially the Ministry of Health or other relevant governing bodies, continued Alamsyah, should be able to include the export of masks, antiseptics, and raw materials for PPEs, in the prohibitions or restrictions stipulated in the Ministry of Trade Regulation.
"So that the Ministry of Trade and the Customs Office can prevent the export of these products and monitor any possibility for circumvention" added Alamsyah.
FIKRI ARIGI | DIO SUHENDA (INTERN TRANSLATOR)