Jakarta governor mulls pulling emergency brake as Covid-19 cases surge in capital

JAKARTA (JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan has considered pulling the emergency brake to stop the gradual reopening of several essential services sectors as cases of Covid-19 continue to soar in the capital city.

The Covid-19 positivity rate in the city during the past three weeks had reached 8.9 per cent, Mr Anies said, above the 5 per cent threshold set by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Nevertheless, Mr Anies vowed to monitor closely the positivity rate during the last days of the city’s large-scale social restrictions period, which ends on Aug 27.

“About the emergency brake and so forth, we will monitor (the situation) for a few days ahead,” Mr Anies said on Monday (Aug 17) as quoted by tempo.co

“Since the start of the pandemic, the positivity rate in the country was 13.1 per cent with Jakarta reaching 5.9 per cent,” he said. “The number would be considered dangerous if it reached 10 per cent.”

The Governor added: “I advise all residents to keep wearing a mask anytime, anywhere. If you have any ailments, please report it to us and we will conduct a medical test.”

Jakarta reached its critical point as the capital saw rising hospitalisation of Covid-19 patients with a 40 to 50 per cent occupancy rate in July.

Previously, Mr Anies had also hinted at a reinstatement of stricter large-scale social restrictions periods after the city recorded the highest number of daily cases.

On Monday, Jakarta recorded 552 new cases of Covid-19, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 29,952.

With the latest number, Jakarta reclaimed the status as the epicentre of virus transmission in the country after passing East Java, which had recorded a total of 28,239 cases as of Monday.

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