POSTS BY Abdurrachman Satrio

State of Emergency Through the Back Door

One of the problems for Indonesia’s government when dealing with the coronavirus crisis was its non-transparent approach towards the public. Not least because of that, many people in Indonesia do not trust the government when it comes to handling the pandemic. The government’s attempt to declare the civilian emergency status which would have enabled it to control the flow of information has failed due to public opposition. A move by its police chief, however, is now trying to introduce emergency powers through the back door and in blatant disregard of a Constitutional Court ruling.

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Indonesia’s Fight against COVID-19: A Battle Over the Meaning of Emergency?

Indonesia is a perfect example of how poorly a country can handle the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). In February, when Indonesia’s neighbouring countries such as Singapore were occupied with the restriction of the entry of foreigners into their territory after the announcement of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, Indonesia’s government under the Presidency of Joko Widodo (Jokowi) introduced the opposite policy which made it easier for foreign tourists (including those from the mainland China) to travel to Indonesia. The purpose of this particular policy according to Jokowi’s government was to exploit the economic gaps which would arise from foreigners’ fears of travelling to Indonesia’s neighbours including Singapore and Thailand.

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