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If I Were President of Indonesia...

6 April 2020   17:10 Diperbarui: 6 April 2020   17:32 21 1 1 Mohon Tunggu...

These last few months, the entire world is shaken up with the news of a deadly virus, originating from a wet market in the capital city of Hubei province, China. It is said that the virus came from the presence of wildlife being sold under the table. From then on, the virus has spread throughout the globe. Last month, the virus has finally reached Indonesia. Now, the public is seeking answers from the government. Whether lockdown will be imposed in Jakarta or not, and will inmates be released to stop the virus from spreading in 'cramped' cells.

If I were President of Indonesia, there might be some things that I could do to better the ongoing situation. First, to prevent the virus from even touching an Indonesian citizen, I would quicken the return of Indonesian Citizens that were residing in affected areas. This would surely reduce the number of infected Indonesian nationals. Then, instead of promoting Indonesian tourism in these grave times, I would do what more advanced countries were doing; reject people coming from affected areas. That includes flyovers too.

A lot of people compared COVID-19 with the flu, thus they take this problem lightly. This is a big mistake. So, to avoid misinformation in Indonesia, further education from before the pandemic on how to prevent the virus from spreading, what the virus is, and informing people how dangerous the virus really is, would surely reduce the number of infected people today. 

Moreover, I think the procedure of checking the health conditions of people coming from overseas should've been more strict in the first place. Next, to stop COVID-19 from reaching places outside Jakarta, it is best to commence lockdown in Jakarta, immediately. Even if it will halt economic activities for a while, the outcome of not doing a lockdown is much greater than ceasing economic activity for a short time.

As of this morning, the governor of Jakarta announced an urgent appeal to wear a mask at all times when going outside. If I were President of Indonesia, this statement would've been released earlier. Since research shows that between requiring only the sick ones to wear a mask and making EVERYONE wear a mask, the latter is much more effective in warding off massive virus spreads. This is proven by Hong Kong, whose citizens wore masks; learning from the SARS pandemic that happened in 2003. 

Charts show that the number of people infected in Hong Kong is much lower; compared to cities of the same size. Now, comes the problem of mask shortage. This could be easily solved by introducing a limit to how many masks people could buy per household. And for citizens living below the line, I would distribute a weekly ration of staple foods, vitamins, masks, and things related to hygiene. 

The lack of safety suits, disposable medical equipment, and supplements in the medical field is also apparent. So, I would import those, to hand out to public hospitals. All methods mentioned above would need a lot of funding. Fortunately, the World Bank launched emergency coronavirus support for developing countries like us. Thus, all statements declared above can be done. 

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