JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – Indonesian President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo has urged his cabinet to warn the public about potential new Covid-19 clusters in the wake of protests against the government’s Omnibus Jobs Creation Law last week.
The warning comes as trade unions and university students continue to hit the streets to oppose the legislation.
“President Jokowi instructed us to remind the public that the Covid-19 pandemic is not over. He hoped that the protests will not bring about new Covid-19 clusters,” Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto said on October 12.
He reminded the demonstrators and the general public to abide by health protocols like wearing masks, routine washing of hands, and practicing social distancing.
Indonesian Covid-19 Task Force head Doni Monardo agreed with Airlangga as he warned about the high possibility of transmission among protesters who ignore health protocols.
“Covid-19 is transmitted [person to person], unlike swine flu or bird flu, which was passed from animals to humans,” he said. “The [pandemic] will affect not just anyone, but our families, colleagues and others who are nearest to us.”
Meanwhile, the Indonesian National Police has arrested 5,918 people nationwide in connection with the unrest opposing the jobs law.
“The number of detainees included 1,548 high school students, 796 anarchist members of Anarko, 601 members of the public, 484 laborers, and 443 university students, and others.