Yustinus Paat, Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – The Jakarta administration will continue requiring visitors to provide entry permit when entering the capital city, despite mounting criticism over the effectiveness of such a rule.
Governor Anies Baswedan issued a decree in May requiring any visitor to obtain entry permit, or SIKM, which is granted only for those able to complete the necessary documents, including negative Covid-19 test results. These restrictions were in effort to anticipate massive coronavirus transmission during the annual Ramadan exodus.
"The gubernatorial regulation on the SIKM remains in force until the national emergency related to the [Covid-19] crisis is revoked," Jakarta Transportation Department head Syafrin Liputo said on Thursday.
Syafrin said transport officials are still being deployed at arterial roads to make sure that any visitor has the valid SIKM documents.
On Sunday, Anies had simplified requirements with an updated decree. Instead of a rapid test, people only have to go through the app-based corona likelihood metric (CLM) assessment to prove they are safe to travel. The permit, if granted, will be valid for seven days and can be renewed if expired.
There is still one slight problem. According to Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi, only planes, trains as well as intercity and interprovincial buses (AKAP) require their passengers to have the SIKM before getting on board. Travelers on private cars, on the other hand, are exempt from this rule.
"SIKM is indeed under the Jakarta provincial government's authority. I have notified the Covid-19 Task Force to revoke the rule," Budi said in a hearing with the House of Representatives' transport commission on Wednesday.
"It is pointless if only planes, trains and buses are required [to have SIKM], but not private vehicles," he said.
Hard to obtain
Indonesian Ombudsman commissioner Alvin Lie said that many applicants including legislators have reported difficulties when applying for SIKM. Problems include server issues and slow service that can eventually delay trips.
A permit is granted within one workday after the online form is completed, but several SIKM were only just given in the morning of departure. Another loophole is people potentially turn SIKM submission into a business by promising a faster permit for money, Alvin was quoted as saying by local news website Kumparan.
The rejection rate for SIKM is also pretty high. Around 65,039 out of 145,070 SIKM applicants were denied as of Thursday, according to the official website.