James CurranColumnist – In 1986, the head of the newly merged Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Stuart Harris, argued that Australia is "an isolated country in the sense that there is a lack of regional links; there is no region or grouping to which we belong naturally, and no easy alliances that are immediately of use to us".
Indonesia & East Timor Digest
February 28, 2021
Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – Tech giant Grab and health platform Good Doctor have opened up Southeast Asia's first Covid-19 vaccination drive-thru in Bali to inoculate thousands tourism workers and ride-hailing drivers.
Antara, Papua – A Regional Representatives' Council (DPD) member, on behalf of West Papua's electoral area, made an earnest request to President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) to revoke the government's investment permit for the liquor industry in Papua.
Jakarta (Bloomberg) – South-east Asia's ride-hailing giant Grab Holdings is setting up drive-through vaccination services in Indonesia in collaboration with the government to help the nation inoculate more than 180 million people against Covid-19.
February 27, 2021
Karuni Rompies, Jakarta – The Indonesian government is in discussions with Sinopharm and Moderna about purchasing their COVID-19 vaccines to be used in one of the world's first private vaccination programs.
Dyna Rochmyaningsih, Jakarta – Indonesian scientists are planning to sequence 10,000 samples of COVID-19 this year to detect variants of the virus that may be circulating around the vast archipelago.
Jakarta – Indonesian health authorities have administered 2.6 million doses of coronavirus vaccine since mass vaccination campaign began on Jan. 13, according to government figures released on Saturday.
Jakarta – Although banned by law, 22 open waste dumping sites are still operating. The principle of reduce, reuse, recycle is still nothing more than a slogan.
Andreas Harsono – This week I moderated a discussion with seven courageous Indonesian women – a teacher, a lawyer, an ombudswoman, two psychologists, and two activists.
Nicholas Ryan Aditya, Jakarta – Yesterday, on Friday February 26, the public was surprised to hear the news that all of a sudden Covid-19 vaccinations were being conducted at the House of Representatives (DPR) complex in Senayan, Jakarta, without any public notification.
Jakarta – A tax discount for buyers of automobiles will not be effective in increasing economic growth. A comprehensive stimulus policy package is needed.
Yeremia Sukoyo, Fana Suparman, Jakarta – The anti-corruption agency has arrested South Sulawesi Governor Nurdin Abdullah and several others for alleged corruption in Makassar on Friday.
The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) arrested Nurdin while sleeping at the governor's residence in the South Sulawesi capital and flew him overnight to Jakarta.
Sara Niner – Xanana Gusmao's recent contrived jovial participation in the birthday celebrations of "self-professed" paedophile and defrocked foreign priest Richard Daschbach has shocked many of his supporters, not least his Australian former wife and three Timorese-Australian sons who have publicly condemned the visit and written apologetic letters to the young women who were due to
Most teenagers starting at a new school want to fit in. But not Jeni Hia. On her first day at a public high school in Padang, the capital of West Sumatra province, the 16-year-old was the only girl whose hair was uncovered.
Adam Prireza, Jakarta – Jakarta Deputy Governor Ahmad Riza Patria said the capital city administration has injected 214,523 doses Covid-19 Vaccine; 141,225 doses in the first phase and 73,298 doses in the second phase.
Jakarta health department has, so far, vaccinated market traders, teachers and educational staff, journalists, and athletes.
February 26, 2021
Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – Former Indonesian Military (TNI) commander Gen. (ret.) Moeldoko was reluctant to respond to the statement of the Democrat Party founder Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) who accused him of involving in an attempt to replace the leadership of the party.
Konradus Epa, Jakarta – Relatives of four women recently charged with criminal damage after throwing rocks at a tobacco factory in Indonesia's West Nusa Tenggara province have demanded government protection.
Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – The Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, or SECO, will provide grants of 65 million Swiss francs, or about $71.8 million, for the next four years to assist Indonesia's economic development.
Microsoft seems to have made enemies in Indonesia after the country came last in Southeast Asia in the Digital Civility Index (DCI). Well, it appears that the result has come full circle, as netizens in the country have stormed the tech company's Instagram account that it had to disable its comments section.
Lani Diana Wijaya, Jakarta – Head of Jakarta Bina Marga Agency Hari Nugroho said nearly 6,900 roads in five Jakarta areas were damaged due to heavy rainfall leading to floods. However, he said the number was less than last year's.
"The number drops compared to that of in 2020. Last year, there were almost 9,000 roads damaged," said Hari to Tempo on Thursday, February 25.
The district attorney in Pematangsiantar, North Sumatra has ceased investigation into four male health workers who had been accused of blasphemy after they allegedly violated Islamic customs by bathing a deceased female COVID-19 patient who is not their mahram (unmarriable kin, usually immediate family members, and the husband).
Fachrur Rozie, Jakarta – Criminologist and policing expert Adrianus Meliala has joined others in criticising Covid-19 vaccination for Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) prisoners.
Jakarta – In Pasuruan, East Java, a combat engineer battalion is in dispute with its business partner over the management of a gas station. It is time military businesses were put in order.
Muhammad Hendartyo, Jakarta – The Finance Ministry recorded the government debt stood at Rp6,233.14 trillion at the end of January 2021. The government debt-to-GDP ratio is 40.28 percent.
In terms of size, the debt has risen from 2019, which the 'APBN Kita' book says is related to process of recovering the economy that is weakened by to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Jakarta – American tech giant Microsoft announced a plan to build its first data center in Indonesia, marking its "most significant" investment in the country in the past 26 years, that would help the largest digital economy in Southeast Asia to generate an additional $6.3 billion in revenue, the company said in a statement on Thursday.
Jakarta – The Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network (SAFEnet) – an institution concerned with freedom of expression in the digital world – has criticised the newly established virtual police (VP) unit formed under the national police headquarters that is tasked with monitoring the activities of netizens.
February 25, 2021
Amnesty International has voiced concern about ongoing deadly conflict in West Papua.
In recent weeks, conflict between the pro-independence West Papua Liberation Army and Indonesia's security forces has intensified in Intan Jaya regency.
Yudha Baskoro, Jakarta – The Religious Affairs Ministry and the Health Ministry have started Covid-19 vaccination for religious leaders at the Istiqlal Mosque, Central Jakarta, on Thursday.
Evarukdijati, Rahmad Nasution, Jayapura, Papua – The Indonesian army will secure the 575-kilometer Transpapua section of the Jayapura-Wamena highway in Papua province to halt the flow of illegal goods, including drugs and liquor, a top military officer said.
Hendrina DK, Rahmad Nasution, Jayapura – Papua's provincial administration is making efforts to restore normalcy in Intan Jaya district, which has been witness to a spate of violence targeting civilians and security personnel over the past two years.
Andita Rahma, Jakarta – The National Police Internal Affairs (Propam) immediately issued a ban against policemen consuming alcohol following a bloody incident where a police personnel identified as CS shot four people – injuring one and killing three people with one of them being a military member – after an altercation broke at a local bar in Cengkareng, West Jakarta.
Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – The Anti-Injustice Social Coalition has reported President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to the police criminal investigations directorate for alleged violations of health protocols during a presidential visit to Maumere in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT).
Shotaro Tani, Jakarta – In a bid to spur both domestic and foreign investment, Indonesia has designated 245 industries as "priority" and will offer incentives to attract capital to those sectors.
Jakarta – Indonesia will receive at least two million doses of a coronavirus vaccine produced by China's Sinopharm for use in a private vaccination scheme due to run alongside a national inoculation programme, a minister said on Thursday.
Mind what you post online, because the National Police has launched a Virtual Police division that is out to warn internet users who violate the country's Information and Electronic Transactions Act (UU ITE).
Heru Andriyanto, Jakarta – Indonesia has vaccinated 1.46 million medical workers since the campaign began on Jan. 13, representing 99.53 percent of all registered workers in the sector, Health Ministry data showed on Thursday.
Hans Kapisa, Manokwari – The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) had evaluated the governance of licensing and permits related to West Papua forests and palm oil plantation companies in the province in Papua Land for the last two years and reported that 24 companies held a permit to turn 576,090 hectares of forests into palm plantations.
Andita Rahma, Dewi Nurita, Jakarta – A watchdog group naming themselves the People's Coalition Against Injustice filed a criminal complaint against President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo to the National Police's Criminal Investigation Unit for allegedly disobeying Covid-19 health protocols.
Herman, Jakarta – Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said that the Indonesian government was still in discussion with American electric car maker Tesla about its investment plan in Southeast Asia's largest economy, which never includes a plan for a car manufacturing facility.
Rescue workers are searching for at least five miners buried on Indonesia's Sulawesi island, after an illegal gold mine collapsed on Wednesday killing at least three people.
A search-and-rescue effort has already retrieved at least three bodies and pulled 15 survivors from debris, officials said on Thursday.
The indigenous people of West Papua have rejected the extension of special autonomy and the planned expansion of new provinces announced by the central government of Indonesia.
The rejection comes from grassroots communities across West Papua and Papuan students who are studying in Indonesia and overseas.
Indonesia's Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has administered COVID-19 vaccines to 39 graft detainees, the anti-graft body confirmed, as it seeks to prevent an outbreak of the disease at its facilities.
Francisca Christy Rosana, Jakarta – Aviation observer from Aviatory Indonesia, Ziva Narendra, asked the government to issue a strict policy, particularly to limit the people's mobility during this year's Eid al-Fitr holidays. She argued that it is vital to curb Covid-19 transmission.
Muhammad Hendartyo, Jakarta – Coordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs and Investments, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, predicted on Thursday, February 25, 2021, that 70 million Indonesians – up until July 2021 – will receive vaccine shots in Indonesia's Covid-19 vaccination program.
Bayu Marhaenjati, Jakarta – An off-duty officer has been named suspect for the deadly shooting at a West Jakarta bar that killed three people, including a soldier, and injured one person early on Thursday.
The shooting at around 04.30 a.m. followed a dispute between the officer, who is identified by initial Brigadier C.S., and bar employees over his bill.
Konradus Epa, Jakarta – Police in Indonesia's West Sumatra province have arrested a man on suspicion of raping up to 30 young boys.
The 53-year-old man, named only as Yuhendri, was arrested in Pariaman, a city in the province's Padang Pariaman district, on Feb. 23.
February 24, 2021
M Rosseno Aji, Friski Riana, Jakarta – Two of Tempo's newspaper and magazine brands, Koran Tempo and Majalah Tempo, took home four awards in The 12th Indonesia Print Media Awards (IPMA) 2021 that was hosted by the print media union or Serikat Perusahaan Pers (SPS).
Katharina R. Lestari, Jakarta – A group of Indonesian activists have launched an online petition calling on authorities to drop blasphemy charges laid against four medical workers for bathing a dead body.
Chairul Fikri, Banten – At least 15 medical workers in South Tangerang, Banten province, were diagnosed with coronavirus and some of them have earlier received two doses of vaccine, a local official said on Wednesday.
Indonesia has vaccinated more than 1.2 million medical workers across the country using a vaccine developed by China's Sinovac Biotech since Jan. 13.
Jakarta – Virtual Police from the Bhayangkara Corps – as the Indonesian police are known – have officially begun operating. The unit, which was the idea of national police chief General Listyo Sigit Prabowo, was formed to prevent criminal actions which violate the Information and Electronic Transaction Law (UU ITE).