There’s no sense of crisis, like fighting a war without a commander: Lapor Covid-19

Source – June 20, 2021
Sign on gate warning that area is in lockdown – June 8, 2021 (Antarra)

Tsarina Maharani, Jakarta – The initiator of the citizen based reporting coalition Lapor Covid-19 (Report Covid-19), Ahmad Arif, says that the public is facing the Covid-19 pandemic without any clear direction.

He is of the view that there is no data transparency and inadequate information and education on the Covid-19 pandemic. In addition to this, he said, there is no clear leadership in confronting the criss.

"Data transparency and information should be the main key for people's understanding and response to the epidemic. In our view there is no firm or clear leadership in the midst of this multi-disciplinary crisis", said Arif during a press conference titled "Urging an Emergency Response: Prioritising the People's Safety in the Midst of the Pandemic", which was organised online on Sunday June 20.

"Moreover when hospitals are almost in a state of collapse like now, we don't see any sense of crisis being shown by our leaders. It's like we're in a war without a commander-in-chief", he added.

According to Arif, the Covid-19 situation in Indonesia is becoming increasingly worrying because of inconsistent government policies over the last 15 months.

He said that the policy narrative being conveyed by one ministry and the next can vary and often be the complete opposite.

"This situation is a reflection of policy inconsistency on the pandemic by the government. For example, one ministry promotes [social] restrictions and health protocols, but another ministry promotes mobility", he said.

In addition to this, Arif said that the government has failed to provide a social security net for people. Like it or not, people who do not have the choice to work from home have to keep working outside the home with all of the associated risks.

Never mind, continued Arif, that many people do not believe in Covid-19 and do not want to comply with heath protocols. According to Arif this is also because of the government's failure to convey a consistent narrative in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The national failure of providing a social security net has forced some people to continue working outside [the home] with all its risks. The other factor, which of course exists, is many don't believe in Covid-10 and don't comply with health protocols, but this is also related to a failure to communicate the risks we face", he said.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was "Lapor Covid-19: Tak Ada "Sense of Crisis" Pemimpin, Kita seperti Perang Tanpa Panglima".]