JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – The Indonesian government’s ban on travel for the Idul Fitri or Eid al-Fitr is thrown into question, after local authorities question the feasibility of banning travel within agglomerations of large cities and the surrounding areas.
Concerns over the spread of Covid-19 variants from India, South Africa and Great Britain continues, after authorities in the Central Java port of Cilacap intern 13 sailors out of 20-man crew of a cargo ship that sailed in from India that tested positive for Covid-19.
Indonesia to Apply No Exceptions in Eid al-Fitr Holiday Travel Ban
The government has announced that its decision to ban homecoming travel or mudik for the Idul Fitri or Eid al-Fitr holidays will include agglomerations of nearby areas as well as more distant provinces.
Covid-19 Task Force spokesman Wiku Adisasmito said the ban applies to nearby inter-provincial agglomerations such as the Greater Jakarta area encompassing the capital and the satellite cities of Bekasi, Bogor, and Depok in West Java province, as well as Tangerang in Banten province.
“The government never made exceptions for localized travel, since all holiday travel is not allowed,” he confirmed to Kompas.com on Friday, May 7.
Wiku is aware that ambiguity and confusion still surrounded the government’s policy on travel in agglomerated areas like the Greater Jakarta Area.
“[The government’s] policy confused us. During our meeting with Minister of Home Affairs [Tito Karnavian], the central government said holiday travel within agglomerated areas are allowed. Then the government confused us by reversing that position,” said Tangerang Mayor Arief Wismansyah.
The Jakarta Provincial Administration is just as confused with the dilemma of telling the difference between citizens of the Greater Jakarta that need to buy foods, go to work or emergencies with those going to their parents’ house for the holidays.