Jayapura, Jubi – The Provincial Government of Papua declares the state of emergency in response to COVID-19 and the transport bans to Papua be extended until 23 April 2020. The statement officially was announced by Papua Deputy Governor Klemen Tinal in Jayapura on Wednesday (8/4/2020) after receiving a report of the increasing cases of the coronavirus in Papua. By Wednesday evening, the number of positive COVID-19 cases breaks to 45 cases in Papua.
The state of emergency declaration refers to the MoU No. 440/3612/SET dated 24 March 2020 about the Prevention, Control and Conduct in response COVID-19 in Papua Province. This agreement has become the basis for closing access to commercial transports to Papua since 26 March to 9 April 2020. Now, the commercial transports ban be extended until 2020.
The commercial transports ban applied to all commercial and chartered flights and boards except for cargo and shipping transporting goods and logistics include food, fuel medicine and financial sectors. Meanwhile, aeroplanes to bring healthcare workers and to evacuate patients remains to operate. However, the aircrews time shift and security check still required to refer to the existing health protocols.
“I ask travel agents to temporarily stop their business (not selling airfare or cruise tickets) until everything is clear. It means for 14 days ahead there is no activity of commercial transports,” asserted Klemen Tinal.
Deputy Governor further stated that there is a significant increase of the coronavirus cases in Papua. Up to Wednesday evening, the cases have reached 45. Besides, there are 54 patients under-surveillance, while more than 3,084 are under supervision.
“It becomes a serious threat to the provincial government. Therefore, I want all citizens to be able to follow this decision,” said Tinal in Jayapura on Wednesday (8/4/2020).
In the meantime, the social distancing policy which requires students and employers to study and work remotely at home is also extended from 14 April to 23 April 2020. However, working from home does not apply for those who work in the field of healthcare, food, energy, communication, finance, logistics and pharmacy.
The Provincial Government of Papua also imposes the operation hours for traditional markets, shopping centres, convenience stores and stalls. They allow opening from 6.00 a.m. to 2 p.m. Meanwhile, tourist attractions and recreation venues should be closed. However, public health facilities include hospitals, community health centres, pharmacies, health clinics and general practitioners remains open as usual.
Moreover, Tinal said police officers would stop and dismiss all activities involved many people without exception. “All regional and municipal governments in Papua must accomplish the MoU with a full sense of responsibility,” said Tinal.
He also appeals to people to be careful and maintain their health because the key to break the chain of transmission of COVID-19 is on the hand of the community. “We hope the community can obey this decision and support each other. If it’s not urgent, please do not do social interaction,” said Tinal. (*)
Reporter: Alexander Loen
Editor: Pipit Maizier