August 23, 2020, 10.33 PM

BATAM, KOMPAS.com – Twelve people tested positive for Covid-19 after taking away the remains of a relative who died from the disease earlier this week on August 19 on the island of Batam in Indonesia’s Riau province.

Batam Health Services Head Didi Kusmarjadi confirmed the August 19 incident, saying "The positive cases were among a group of 24 people who brought the remains of their relative, who was identified as YHG, home with them from the BP Batam Hospital for burial.” 

Also read: Indonesia's Bio Farma to Get 50M Doses of Covid-19 Bulk Vaccine Starting November

“The Batam branch of the Covid-19 task force obtained the results following swab tests of 23 people. We could not get the results of the 24th person and ringleader of the group, whom we identified as Hertina Linda, as she is yet to be contacted.”

He hoped the traditional market vendor will voluntarily do a swab test. He warned that the authorities will get to her by any means necessary if she failed to cooperate.

Hertina and her relatives had engaged in a tug-of-war over the 47-year-old YBP’s remains from the BP Batam Hospital after they took his remains from the morgue.

Also read: 2,200 Volunteers Sign Up for Covid-19 Vaccine Trials in Indonesia

The hospital took his body back after he tested positive for the coronavirus only for his family to retrieve it before the authorities reclaimed the body. YBP was confirmed to be Batam’s 433rd Covid-19 case.

Indonesia’s Covid-19 Task Force noted on its website https://covid19.go.id/ that Riau has 1,237 coronavirus cases. A total of 767 patients recovered from Covid-19, while 19 people died from the pandemic. 

(Writer: Hadi Maulana, Batam Contributor | Editors: Aprillia Ika, Rachmawati)

Sources: 

https://nasional.kompas.com/read/2020/08/23/16231471/aksi-nekat-jemput-paksa-jenazah-pasien-covid-19-di-batam-12-penjemputnya
https://regional.kompas.com/read/2020/08/23/16150061/update-covid-19-di-aceh-sumut-sumbar-riau-kepri-jambi-dan-bengkulu-23

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