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‘I need to protect my family’: Jakartans nix homecoming trips following COVID-19 ‘mudik’ ban

first_img“I have never celebrated Idul Fitri in Jakarta because I don’t know what to do here,” he told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday.Anggit initially still intended to go on mudik, even though he was aware of the central government’s advice against it. He had even prepared masks and hand sanitizer for his trip and planned to follow the quarantine protocol in Malang once he arrived.However, he changed his mind after President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo announced a ban on the Idul Fitri mudik on Tuesday and decided to request a refund for the train ticket he bought in February, even though it would mean spending the holiday alone.“Because of the COVID-19 outbreak, I decided not to go on mudik this year,” he said. Naila Fauzia Mastutie, a 31-year-old civil servant living in East Jakarta, also decided to cancel her ticket to her hometown in Tulungagung regency, East Java, which she bought at the beginning of the year.“I realized that it’s not good enough to protect myself, I need to protect my family and other residents in my hometown too,” she told the Post on Tuesday.Read also: Coronavirus outbreak may end in June with ‘mudik’ ban: IDIMillions of people return to their hometowns every year – often traveling from urban centers to the countryside – to celebrate Idul Fitri, with about 20 million leaving Greater Jakarta alone every year during the Islamic holiday.With Jakarta the country’s epicenter of the virus outbreak, the huge number of expected travelers has raised concerns about mass contagion, with public health experts warning that mudik could cause the respiratory illness to spread rapidly across Java.The severity of the threat finally convinced Jokowi to ban the Idul Fitri mudik altogether, weeks after his administration had maintained its previous policy of merely advising the public against it.Jokowi announced the ban after reading a Transportation Ministry survey that found that 24 percent of the country’s 270 million people still planned to travel to their hometowns and that 7 percent had already left.For civil servants and their families, meanwhile, mudik was prohibited far earlier, with Administrative and Bureaucratic Reform Minister Tjahjo Kumolo saying that they could not travel to their hometowns from April 6 until the country “is free of COVID-19”.As of Wednesday, Indonesia had recorded 7,418 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 635 deaths. Jakarta alone had reported 3,383 cases and 301 deaths, nearly half the country’s cases.Read also: COVID-19: Jakarta extends PSBB through RamadanAcknowledging the danger the virus posed, Audy, a 47-year-old private employee living in North Jakarta, decided to cancel his Idul Fitri plans and expressed hope many others would do the same.“I hope other citizens also comply [with the government’s ban],” he told the Post on Wednesday.Coordinating Maritime and Investment Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, who is also the acting transportation minister, said the ban would begin on Friday with travel restrictions to be imposed in COVID-19 red zones that could be sanctioned starting May 7.Road use, however, will not be completely blocked, as public transportation services across Greater Jakarta will continue to operate to service those who still need to commute to work, including health workers and hospital staff.Transportation Ministry spokesperson Adita Irawati said on Wednesday that the ministry was preparing a regulation on the mudik ban that would include the sanctions that would be imposed. Transportation of aid and other emergency services will be exempted from the regulation, she said.Adita said the ministry would limit access to regional entry points instead of blocking roads.State-owned railway operator PT Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI) has announced that it will give full refunds to passengers who decide to cancel their trips. Those who have booked tickets with national flag carrier Garuda Indonesia, meanwhile, are able to reschedule their flights or receive a refund with vouchers.Topics : For many Indonesians, the Idul Fitri mudik (exodus) is an important tradition that they must prepare for months ahead of Ramadhan, with train and bus tickets in high demand.But the SAR-CoV-2 outbreak has forced many living in Jakarta – a city thousands have migrated to from around the country in search of work – to cancel their plans to celebrate Idul Fitri in their hometowns, even if they already have their ticket in their hands.One of them is Anggit Rizki, a 25-year-old worker living in West Jakarta, who in previous years had always returned to his hometown of Malang, East Java, to celebrate Idul Fitri with his family.last_img read more

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Forde reigns supreme at South American 10km Guyana leg

first_img– Thomas, Missigher round off clean sweep for Guyana By Rawle ToneyCLEVELAND Forde, one of the Caribbean’s leading distance athletes, reigned supreme at yesterday’s South American 10km, leading a clean sweep for Guyana.Forde clocked 33 minutes, 42 seconds (33:42.0) to finish ahead of countrymen, Cleveland Thomas (33:51.0) and Winston Missigher (34:05.0), who finished second and third, respectively.Trinidad and Tobago’s Curtis Cox settled for fourth after crossing the line with a time of 34:18.0, while St Vincent and the Grenadines’ Junior Ashton (35:53.0) wrapped up the top five finishers, finishing fifth.Linda McDowall from St Vincent and the Grenadines was the first female to cross the line, running 39:50.0 to finish ahead of Grenada’s Kenisha Pascal (40:44.0) and Guyana’s Maria Urquhart (44:20.0).Meanwhile, Forde, when the race started in front of the GTT Earth Station, was never in the lead, but ensured that he remained in contention to utilise his trade mark finish.Missigher and Thomas, along with Cox and Ashton, carried the race for the most part, until the leading pack reached the Camp Ayanganna, Thomas Lands, entrance where Forde used his trademark sprint to the finish.Speaking to Chronicle Sport after winning another leg, having done the same in Suriname last weekend, Forde said that prior to the start of the race, along with Missigher and Thomas, they decided to work together.Cleveland Forde (first from left) about to make a move on the leading pack on the Rupert Craig Highway (Samuel Maughn photo)“Actually, the two of them (Missigher and Thomas) did the work, I didn’t had to. We thought we would’ve moved away from Cox because we know he has a good 2K or so, but then, coming down to the end, we had to change that strategy,” said Forde.Last Sunday, in Paramaribo, Suriname, Forde ran 34:5.08 which was much slower than yesterday’s time. However, Forde said “we know these times are ridiculously slow, but we weren’t looking at the time, we were looking at the position. I know in these condition, we just wanted to do something decent. You know, in these conditions, we just have to ensure we have a good finish.”Speaking at the presentation of prizes at the National Park, Dr George Norton, Minister of Social Cohesion who also holds the responsibility for sports, said that he was disappointed at the turn-out of athletes, but lauded the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) for pulling off the event.Norton, who also severed as a Vice President of AAG, believes that next year, with better planning, and help from his Ministry, the Guyana leg of the South American 10km race will be the best.last_img read more

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Tallawahs say Dropping Chris Gayle Was Just Business

first_imgResponding to a series of YouTube videos in which the Jamaican accused assistant coach Ramnaresh Sarwan of having a big part to play in the Tallawahs releasing him from the squad, the franchise said it was disappointed by Gayle’s comments. According to Gayle, he agreed to two reductions, even though a three-year contract he had signed with the team in 2019 stated that his pay would be increased each year. However, the self-styled ‘Universe Boss’ said he refused to a third cut, when the request was made on the CPL’s March 31 retention submission deadline, and Miller said he would get back to him but never did. The eighth edition of the CPL is scheduled to take run August 19 to September 26, but organisers are keeping an eye on the COVID-19 pandemic and liaising with medical advisors and governments to determine if play will go ahead. In a scathing attack on Sarwan whom he called a “snake”, the big hitter said his former West Indies teammate was being vindictive because he (Gayle) told him he did not think he was ready to be head coach of the squad. CMC “The ownership and management of the Jamaica Tallawahs was disappointed to see the comments made by Mr Christopher Gayle about his departure from the Tallawahs, as we would much rather have had these discussions in private,” the franchise said in its statement on Wednesday. Gayle, 40, played his first four seasons of the T20 tournament with Tallawahs, which he led to the title in 2013 and 2016, before turning out for St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He returned to his home franchise last year. KINGSTON, Jamaica – The Jamaica Tallawahs Caribbean Premier League (CPL) franchise on Wednesday insisted that the decision to drop Chris Gayle ahead of the 2020 season was just “business and cricketing reasoning”, contrary to what the T20 specialist has alleged. “The Tallawahs had a very disappointing season in CPL 2019, where the team finished last in the tournament. The ownership and management team has exercised its rights in the selection of players for CPL 2020 for the betterment of the team.” It insisted that Sarwan did not play a role in the decision to part ways with the 40-year-old batting star. Last week, the St. Lucia Zouks announced he was joining the squad for the 2020 CPL. The world’s leading T20 run scorer also charged that management of the franchise was “playing games” with him before his departure. He claimed that the Tallawahs’ CEO Jeff Miller asked him three times to take a pay cut because the franchise was struggling financially. The Kris Persaud-owned franchise also denied Gayle’s claims that his exclusion from the Tallawahs this year was political. “The ownership and management of the Tallawahs have no political affiliation with any political organization in any country of the Caribbean,” it said, adding that it would make no further comment on the matter as it was “focusing on building the team for the future”. “Mr Gayle gave several reasons for the decision that was made not to retain him in the Tallawahs. However, the truth is that this decision was made collectively by the ownership and management team, which did not include Mr Ramnaresh Sarwan, and based purely on business and cricketing reasoning,” it said in a statement. CEO Pete Russell has said that novel social distancing measures could be implemented to ensure the tournament comes off as planned, including playing without international players and using only a few stadiums as venues to mitigate against widespread contact. Gayle said he subsequently found out from people at the CPL that his name was not on the list.last_img read more

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