Don’t Go Home in the Plague Season – The government need not hesitate to immediately issue a Lebaran homecoming ban. The ban was urgent to prevent the corona virus pandemic explosion, the number of sufferers continues to increase and cause concern.
So far, the government has only been appealing to the public not to go home during Idul Fitri, which will fall on May 23-24, 2020. The prohibition policy is still being studied and will be discussed in a cross-ministerial and institutional meeting today.
The government should learn from the experience of the previous few months. We actually have about two months before the 2019 Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) comes to this country. At the end of December 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) had set off a danger alarm. Instead of getting ready, at that time the officials of this country seemed to take it for granted. The government’s inaction in anticipating a pandemic eventually brought Indonesia to its current state.
When the first positive corona virus patient was discovered, on March 2, 2020, the government was still impressed covering the scale of the pandemic. When the number of people with Covid-19 continues to grow, we are just nervous. Everything is lacking, from the availability of medical infrastructure, prevention protocols, to patient handling procedures.
Government stuttering is still felt today. Distancing social policies echoed by the government are still widely violated. Increasing the number of people with Covid-19 is then difficult to brake. As of March 29, 2020, the number of corona-positive patients reached 1,285, with 114 fatalities and only 64 recovering.
Lebaran homecoming can worsen the situation because it has the potential to cause an explosion in the number of new patients. According to Transportation Ministry data, last year the number of homecomers reached 23 million. Most of them come from Jakarta, which is now the epicenter of the distribution of corona. If migrants are still allowed to return home, they will be difficult to prosecute implementing social distancing. The annual tradition of going home is always thickly colored by queues, traffic jams, crowds, as well as intense social interactions. DominoQQ
Because the central government has been slow in making decisions, a number of regions have taken the initiative to close some of their territories from migrants. There are also those who implement a 14-day isolation policy for every new person who enters their territory. Supposedly, restrictions on the movement of residents between regions are carried out in command by the central government. Prohibition by each region is even prone to trigger other problems, such as social friction.
Under normal conditions, going home or traveling across regions is a citizen’s right. But the law also places public safety higher than individual rights. Moreover, the current homecoming can threaten mutual safety. Therefore, the government needs to act quickly and courageously. If the epidemic has not abated, besides banning going home, the government needs to limit other activities involving many people in one place, such as the implementation of Eid prayers.
At the same time, the community also needs to play a role. Commitment and joint willingness to reduce the intensity of encounters with others must be held firm. One of them is by sacrificing not going home for the common good. For Lebaran this time only.