Andi Hajramurni and Dessy Sagita, Mamuju, West Sulawesi – Medics battled exhaustion and the risk of Covid-19 as they raced Monday to treat scores of people injured by a devastating earthquake in West Sulawesi.
Indonesia & East Timor Digest
January 18, 2021
January 17, 2021
Jakarta – Human Rights Watch (HRW) has criticised the government of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo for its weak health response to Covid-19 which has brought Indonesia to its knees since the pandemic started in March 2020.
Kadir Ruslan, Jakarta – In Indonesia, tofu-tempeh is a story of folk food with a flavor of imports. For a few days after New Year, tempeh and tofu disappeared from the market as producers halted their business for three days in protest against the soaring price of soybean, the primary material of the popular food, which is mostly imported.
Jakarta – Five people were killed, and one was still missing after floods and landslides hit Manado, North Sulawesi, on Saturday following heavy rain over some unstable soil structure on Saturday, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, or BNPB, said in a statement on Sunday.
Ben Terrall – Of all the tragic events of the 20th Century, the 1965-1966 campaign of mass killing in Indonesia is among the least known in the U.S. Researchers estimate that the Washington-backed Indonesian military and its civilian militias killed up to one million people.
Elena Couper & Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Tempo is doing what any respected media company should do: reporting facts and providing valuable analytical opinions on issues that matter to public interests away from political biases.
Antara, Jakarta – Floodwaters, reaching a height of up to two meters, submerged two sub-districts in Jember District, East Java Province, and displaced hundreds of people.
January 16, 2021
Meleva Thorn & Sienna Curnow, Jakarta – Indonesian journalists are waging a war on fake news through a collaborative fact-checking network involving nearly all major media organizations in the country. The online network, CekFakta, is proving a key tool in the fight against misinformation.
Pacific Media Watch – The pro-independence conflict in West Papua with a missionary plane reportedly being shot down at Intan Jaya has stirred contrasting responses from the TNI/POLRI state sources, church leaders and an independence leader.
A shooting caused a plane to catch fire on 6 January 2021 in the Intan Jaya regency, Papua province.
Jakarta – The government is once again unfurling an electric car program. It needs a comprehensive and consistent policy to allow the old dream to not collapse.
Jakarta – At least 42 people have died from the West Sulawesi earthquake, and more than 800 people suffered minor to serious injuries as the search and rescue teams work around the clock to find people trapped under the ruins and restore power to the region, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency said on Saturday.
Niniek Karmini and Yusuf Wahil, Mamuju – Damaged roads and bridges, power blackouts and lack of heavy equipment on Saturday hampered Indonesia's rescuers after a 6.2 magnitude earthquake left at least 45 dead and hundreds injured on Sulawesi island.
Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia's ongoing surge in newly coronavirus cases reached a new level with an additional 14,224 cases on Saturday to set a new high for the fourth straight day and take the country's total to 896,642, government figures show.
January 15, 2021
Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Technology giant Grab requests early access to the Covid-19 vaccine for their driver partners and merchants as part of the prioritized vulnerable population.
The national vaccination campaign officially began on Wednesday, with President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo getting the first dose of the vaccine.
Erwida Maulia, Jakarta – Indonesian state oil and gas company Pertamina said on Friday it has begun a second round of test production for a biodiesel made entirely from palm oil at its largest refinery in Central Java Province.
Jakarta – The government is recruiting a million teachers under a contract scheme. A short term solution for the matter of badly distributed quality educators.
Angie Teo, Jakarta – A 6.2-magnitude earthquake on Indonesia's Sulawesi island has killed at least 35 people and injured hundreds the country's disaster mitigation agency said, as panicked residents fled to safer areas after many buildings were damaged.
Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia recorded 12,818 coronavirus cases on Friday to set a new high for the third day in a row and take its total to 882,418, according to Health Ministry data.
It's for the first time the country topped 12,000 cases in a single day. The pace in newly coronavirus cases has been rising to a new level since late December.
Jakarta – Prominent Muslim preacher Syekh Ali Jaber died on Thursday following 19 days' treatment at Yarsi hospital in Central Jakarta.
The 44-year-old cleric was admitted to the hospital in December after complaining of fever, coughing, and shortness of breath. On Dec. 29, 2020, he announced on his social media accounts that he had tested positive for COVID-19.
Unggul Wirawan, Dion Bisara, Jakarta – Indonesia's Constitutional Court has rejected on Thursday a motion to expand its broadcasting law that would put content creators on digital platforms like Youtube, Instagram, or TikTok under the same scrutiny and censorship regime as the local radio and television broadcasters.
Antara, Jakarta – Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin said he was open to the possibility of paid Covid-19 vaccination programs carried out by corporations. Discussions about the option, he added, were still afoot.
Antara, Jakarta – The Search and Rescue (SAR) team of the South Kalimantan Police's Mobile Brigade Unit (Brimob) evacuated residents affected by the flood at night.
"The flooding tends to increase at night so officers are sweeping the areas to find people who want to be evacuated," said the Brimob commander, Sr. Comr. Ronny Suseno, on Thursday night, Jan. 14.
January 14, 2021
Agus Susanto, East Lampung, Indonesia – It's early December and Sujiono is busy trimming the branches of a ficus tree in his village in Sumatra's Lampung province. It's not your typical pruning session: the 41-year-old is collecting the leaves for the rhinos at the captive-breeding center at nearby Way Kambas National Park.
Egi Adyatama, Jakarta – The Coordinating Minister of Politics, Law, and Security Mahfud MD said that the final report on the deaths of six Islam Defenders Front (FPI) members has reached President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo.
Antara, Jakarta – Social Affairs Minister Tri Rismaharini or Risma initiated a breakthrough by making identity cards for street buskers, homeless people, and other marginal people in Jakarta.
Martin Abbugao and Dessy Sagita, Singapore – The mystery plunge of a passenger jet into the sea is another dark chapter in Indonesia's horror aviation history, although safety standards have improved in recent years, analysts say.
Edna Tarigan, Jakarta, Indonesia – Indonesia started vaccinating health workers and public servants for COVID-19 on Thursday, a day after President Joko Widodo received the first shot of China's Sinovac Biotech vaccine.
The Health Ministry is planning to vaccinate more than 1.3 million health workers and 17.4 million public officials in the first stage.
Jakarta (Bloomberg) – Indonesia's transport ministry ordered the nation's airlines to inspect their older, so-called classic Boeing 737 aircraft following Saturday's (Jan 9) crash of a Sriwijaya Air passenger jet with 62 people on board.
Jakarta – Banning all activity of the Islam Defenders Front solved nothing. There should be a strategic cultural design to address extremism.
The government should not have taken the short cut of stopping all activities of the Islam Defenders Front (FPI). Aside from solving nothing, banning activities and organization's attributes violated the constitution.
Heru Andriyanto, Dina Manafe, Jakarta – Indonesia began the campaign for mass vaccination against coronavirus on Thursday, a day after President Joko Widodo and a number of prominent people took the shot of Chinese-made Sinovac vaccine to symbolically launch the program.
The move came amid spiraling numbers of newly cases and deaths, which set new records a day earlier.
Sebastian Partogi, Jakarta – Institutional problems have hampered sustainable food systems in Indonesia, making it hard for the country to provide adequate nutrition for people across the archipelago, experts have found.
Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – The Presidential Palace stated that it had reprimanded a celebrity, Raffi Ahmad, for neglecting the health protocols during a gathering with a number of other famous names on Wednesday night, Jan. 13. As circulated on social media, Raffi and friends did not wear face masks and maintain a safe distance.
Rebecca Ratcliffe – At the Uluwatu temple in Bali, monkeys mean business. The long-tailed macaques who roam the ancient site are infamous for brazenly robbing unsuspecting tourists and clinging on to their possessions until food is offered as ransom payment.
Michael Kabuni – The United Liberation Movement for West Papua has announced that it is forming the West Papuan Provisional Government. This comes as Indonesia has refused to extend the Special Autonomy provision granted to West Papua 20 years ago, which is set to expire next year. Across the border, support for West Papuan independence in Papua New Guinea (PNG) has been growing.
Budiarti Utami Putri, Jakarta – The Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence (KontraS) hoped that President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's decision to appoint Comr. Gen. Listyo Sigit Prabowo as a National Police Chief candidate could bring a good impact on the reform of the security sector.
Egi Adyatama, Jakarta – Amnesty International Indonesia strongly criticized the controversial statement issued by deputy minister of law and human rights Eddy Hiariej who claimed that people refusing to be vaccinated or anti-vaxxers would face legal repercussions.
Dyaning Pangestika, Jakarta – As Indonesia continues to see a spike in COVID-19 cases placing its healthcare system in dire straits, the central government has introduced new measures to restrict activities in hopes of slowing transmission rates.
January 13, 2021
Ryan Dagur, Jakarta – Merauke Archdiocese in Indonesia's Papua province is set to receive billions of rupiah through a collaboration with an environmentally controversial palm oil company, sparking strong protests from local Catholics.
The Leader of Solomon Islands Opposition, Hon. Matthew Wale condemns in the strongest term revelations that the Indonesian government intends to remove the indigenous people of West Papua out from their motherland, the Solomon Star reports.
Prof. Abdul Muthalib, the presidential doctor who injected Indonesian President Joko Widodo with the CoronaVac vaccine this morning, is now under the spotlight thanks to his shaky hands.
Jakarta, Indonesia – In the UK, the first person to receive a COVID-19 vaccine outside trial conditions was a 90-year-old pensioner. In Canada, the first recipient was only marginally younger at 89. In Germany, a 101-year-old nursing home resident was first in line.
Niniek Karmini and Andi Jatmiko, Jakarta – Indonesian divers have retrieved from the sea bed the flight data recorder of a Sriwijaya Air plane that crashed into the Java Sea with 62 people on board at the weekend, officials said.
Carlos Ky Paath, Farouk Arnaz, Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has nominated Criminal Investigation Agency Head Comr. Gen. Listyo Sigit Prabowo as the new National Police chief, his office confirmed on Wednesday.
If approved by the House of Representatives, Listyo will replace Idham Azis who reaches retirement age on January 30.
Reiner Brabar, Kota Sorong – On Monday January 11, hundreds of protesters from the Papuan People's Front (FRP) who oppose the extension of Special Autonomy (Otsus) held a long-march from Kilometre 9 to the Sorong City Regional House of Representatives (DPRD) carrying a coffin with the message "The late Otsus".
Ans K in Merauke, Papua – Mama Elisabeth Ndiwaen, one of the Papuan landowners who has been strongly critical of highlighting oil palm investment in Merauke regency in Papua province has urged the Archdiocese of Merauke to stop collaborating with PT Tunas Sawa Erma (Korindo Group).
An Indonesian cartoon for children has become the subject of a controversy related to Islamic radicalism ahead of the show's movie debut.
Jakarta – The Indonesian government responded slowly and insufficiently to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, focusing instead on a jobs law that will harm labor rights and the environment, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2021.
Jakarta – President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo received the country's first Covid-19 jab on Wednesday, as the government kicked off a mass vaccination drive to clamp down on soaring case rates.
Diwangkara Bagus Nugraha and Filda Citra Yusgiantoro – Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's vision to make the country a destination for foreign company investments neglects the growing demand for clean energy.
Anne Barker – Indonesian President Joko Widodo has received the first dose of a Chinese-made vaccine as part of the launch of the country's ambitious plan to vaccinate up to 180 million people within a year.