Online motorcycle drivers rally in Jakarta, demand legal umbrella, professional status

CNN Indonesia – January 5, 2022
Online motorcycle drivers rally at Horse Statue in Central Jakarta – January 5, 2022 (CNN)

Jakarta – Several alliances of online motorcycle drivers or ojol protested near the Arjuna Wiwaha or Horse Statue on Jalan Medan Merdeka Barat in Central Jakarta on Wednesday January 5 demanding clarity over a legal umbrella for professional ojol drivers.

There were at last one hundred protesters taking part in the protest action earlier this afternoon.

Protest representative Danny Stephanus said that since 2018 there has been no clarity about a legal umbrella related to the status of ojol drivers. According Stephanus, this is only the latest in a series of protest actions they have held since 2018.

"The ojol profession is the same as any other profession, if there isn't a legal umbrella we become illegitimate children, our sweat and blood is exploited, but the profits are taken by the employers, it's not fair", said Stephanus at the location of the rally in Wednesday.

The legal umbrella referred to by the drivers is one which it is hoped can regulate tariffs, partnership contracts and employment status. Stephanus claimed that ojol drivers will continue to be hurt financially if no legal umbrella is issued.

The government has in fact already issued Department of Transport and Communications Ministry Regulation Number 12/2019 on the Protection and Safety of Motorcycle Users that are Used in the Public Interest. According to Stephanus however, the regulation is not considered to be a legal umbrella for ojol drivers.

If the ojol drivers' demands for a legal umbrella are not heeded, they will demand that Department of Transport and Communications Minister Budi Karya Sumadi resign from his post.

"We're tired of shouting and screaming, so our demand this time round is that if they don't want to issue a legal umbrella, the minister steps down, is replaced", said Stephanus to the approval of his colleagues.

In relation to the ojol driver demonstration, police rerouted traffic in the vicinity of Jalan Medan Merdeka. Central Jakarta Metro district police traffic unit head (Kasat Lantas) Police Commissioner Purwanta said that the road closures and rerouting of traffic was still situational in character. (dmi/kid)

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Driver Ojol Demo di Jakarta, Tuntut Payung Hukum Status Profesi".]