Istiqlal Mosque to hold Friday mass prayer despite COVID-19 warning

first_imgIstiqlal Mosque in Jakarta will still hold Friday prayers despite warnings to restrict public gatherings to contain the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The mosque’s management says it is following a decision made by the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI).“The mosque’s grand imam Nasaruddin Umar has instructed that the Friday mass prayer for this week will be held as usual following the MUI’s decision,” the mosque’s spokesperson, Abu Hurairah Abdul Salam, said on Wednesday, as quoted by Antara.However, he added that the decision could be altered if the grand imam and MUI issued new instructions. The management of Istiqlal will not provide the usual prayer mats. This is to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the mosque. Authorities have sprayed disinfectant in the building’s interior.Among the places sprayed with disinfectants were “the place for wudhu [ablutions], the bathroom and the Quran mushaf [manuscript] storage area,” Abu said. Istiqlal Mosque, the largest mosque in Southeast Asia, will remain open for Muslims who want to worship. However, they will be asked to leave the mosque after completing their prayers.Tourists and pilgrims have also been temporarily barred from entering the mosque. This policy has been in place since Monday.The ulema council previously issued a fatwa allowing Muslims in areas where COVID-19 had spread “uncontrollably” to skip “Friday prayers in those areas until the situation returns to normal”. The MUI also urged the government to map areas with outbreaks of COVID-19 following the fatwa. (dpk)Topics :last_img read more

‘From Russia with Love’: Putin sends aid to Italy to fight virus

first_imgThe Russian army on Sunday began flying medical help to Italy to help it battle the new coronavirus after receiving an order from President Vladimir Putin, a goodwill gesture that Moscow labelled “From Russia with Love”.Giant Il-76 military planes began taking off from an airbase in the Moscow region after Putin spoke to Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Saturday and agreements were later reached between respective defense ministers.The Kremlin said Putin had expressed his support for Italy’s leaders and people in the extremely difficult situation they were facing and had heeded an Italian request for help. Italy recorded almost 800 deaths from the coronavirus on Saturday, taking the toll in the world’s hardest-hit country to almost 5,000, out of over 53,000 reported infections.”Giuseppe Conte expressed his sincere gratitude for the steps Russia is taking to support Italy at such a tough time for it,” the Kremlin said.Moscow has tried to cultivate close ties with NATO and European Union member Italy in recent years. It asked Rome to help persuade the EU to lift sanctions imposed over Russia’s annexation of Ukraine from Crimea in 2014 – although those sanctions remain in place.China, the origin of the outbreak, has also sent medical supplies to Italy, amid complaints from eurosceptic far-right leader Matteo Salvini that the European Union was failing in its duty of solidarity. Topics :center_img ‘From Russia with love’TV footage released by the Russian Defense Ministry showed a column of at least seven military vehicles, including large trucks, waiting to be loaded onto planes.The planes and trucks bore giant stickers showing heart-shaped Russian and Italian flags next to one another with the slogan ‘From Russia with Love’ in both Russian and Italian.At least three planes took off on Sunday afternoon. The Ministry said they were bound for the Pratica di Mare military airbase, 30 km southwest of Rome.The Kremlin said Russia was sending truck-based units capable of disinfecting vehicles, buildings and public spaces, as well as medical specialists and equipment, including testing devices, to the worst-hit Italian regions.The team included some of Russia’s leading medical military specialists, who had first-hand experience of fighting outbreaks of African swine fever and anthrax and of developing vaccines against Ebola, it said.The Defense Ministry said its help, being sent on nine military transport planes, would consist of eight medical brigades plus around 100 other personnel, including the epidemiological and virus experts.Russia itself has reported 367 cases of the virus, many of them in Moscow, and one coronavirus-related death. last_img read more

COVID-19: 42 Indonesian pilgrims stranded as Saudi Arabia imposes travel restrictions

first_imgSaudi Arabia announced the suspension of umrah on Feb. 27 and has since restricted movement to contain COVID-19. It suspended all international flights to and from the country for two weeks on March 15.Read also: Umrah pilgrims can reschedule at no extra costs, government promisesThe Islamic kingdom has also locked down its capital city of Riyadh and two Islamic holy cities, Mecca and Medina, while also imposing travel restrictions on 13 regions to stem the transmission of the disease, which has infected 767 people and killed at least one in the country, Bloomberg reported.Saudi Arabia’s Hajj and Umrah Ministry has urged pilgrims with umrah visas within this year’s umrah period to register with the government at e.services.haj.gov.sa until March 28 in order to arrange their departure, which will be facilitated by the Saudi government.Endang Jumali, the hajj consul of the Indonesian Consulate General in Jeddah, said that the stranded Indonesian pilgrims were currently staying at the hotels provided by the travel agencies and that they were all in good health.”The information regarding their departure flights and times will be delivered to their registered phone numbers,” he said in statement on Thursday. (trn)Topics : Forty-two Indonesian umrah (minor haj) pilgrims are reportedly stranded in Saudi Arabia after the Islamic kingdom imposed travel restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country.Indonesia’s Religious Affairs Ministry said that the 42 pilgrims – 39 of whom possessed umrah visas and three of whom had visit visas – had planned their trips to Saudi Arabia through 11 umrah travel agencies.”I have already asked [the travel agencies] to immediately report the pilgrims to Saudi authorities so that their return can be arranged,” the ministry’s umrah and special hajj director, Arfi Hatim, said in a statement on Thursday.last_img read more

US stimulus package is biggest ever, but may not be big enough

first_imgBut investors and economists said even this additional money may be insufficient, and Congress will likely need to pony up trillions of dollars more before the Fed and Treasury can make a significant dent in the real economy. If it does not, many US companies and local governments are at risk of defaulting on debt or even going under.That is because of the sheer size of the world’s largest economy, the unprecedented scale of economic disruption caused by attempts to contain the virus and higher credit losses if the government has to step in to support weaker borrowers, according to these experts.Scott Minerd, chief investment officer of Guggenheim Partners and member of an investor committee that advises the New York Federal Reserve on financial markets, told Reuters he believes the government needs to give the Treasury about $2 trillion to help prop up the economy.Using expected losses from companies in the lowest tier of investment grade, Minerd estimates that the money approved last week might be only enough to absorb losses on loans of about $900 billion.Bare minimumThat is just a fraction of the roughly $9.5 trillion in outstanding US corporate debt, much of which is either in the lowest-tier investment grade rating or already rated as junk, with a higher risk of default. Other areas that need support – such as the commercial paper market where borrowers go for short-term funding or the municipal market that local governments use to raise money for roads and schools – total trillions of dollars more.“I think we’ll be back at the table with another program before this is over,” Minerd said in an interview.With the $2 trillion that he recommends, he said, “you’re on your way to have something of a big enough scale to get things propped up.”In a research note last week, Bank of America analysts said the aid package passed last week was the “bare minimum.” They estimated the government will need a total of $3 trillion in fiscal stimulus and more if the recession deepens.Read also: Reopening economy too early could backfire for humans and markets, investors sayThe Fed declined to comment. The Treasury did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday.The Fed has so far kept its pledge to lend to companies with investment-grade ratings, and to buy other high-quality assets such as Treasury securities.The aim of the Fed’s support is to encourage banks and investors to lend to weaker, and therefore more risky, companies and local governments, where they can earn higher returns, giving them access to the funding they need to continue operating and paying staff.In some of the Fed’s funding facilities, the Treasury put up $10 billion as loss-absorbing capital for every $100 billion of loans. Mnuchin’s comment that the Fed and Treasury can now lend $4 trillion suggests he expects the rate of losses on the new loans to be similar, less than 10 percent.Weaker creditsInvestors said losses would likely increase, however, if the government has to reach deeper into the economy. And they are betting the Fed will have to do so – junk bonds rallied last week, for example.“‘We’re only going to lend money to really good credits’ is a good model if you’re a bank,” said Charles Lemonides, founder of New York-based investment firm ValueWorks LLC. “But if you’re trying to rescue businesses that are otherwise failing, it’s not a very good strategy.”Fed officials have signaled they are not ruling anything out in their efforts.In its support for the commercial paper market, for example, the Fed allows for companies that are downgraded after March 17 to return at least once more to the trough for funding.In its facility to make loans to investment-grade companies through a special purpose vehicle, the Fed said, “The scope of eligible issuers may be expanded in the future.”Read also: Jokowi relaxes loan settlements to help small businesses cope with COVID-19 effectsBut officials know that reaching lower down the credit-quality spectrum entails greater risk and might require a larger contribution from Treasury to account for it.In time, as they see how the programs for higher-quality borrowers play out, they may grow more comfortable with casting a wider net and explore ways to get cash to shakier corporate borrowers while limiting their risk.Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic adviser to the German insurer Allianz SE, said backstopping non-investment grade credit would be a much harder decision for the Fed, given the degree of corporate credit and default risks involved.“I suspect that any move in that direction would need to come with a massive fiscal backstop to protect the integrity of the Fed’s balance sheets,” El-Erian said.Limiting lossesThe Fed’s initial steps into the corporate bond market, limiting its scope to investment grade issuers, essentially avoids rewarding or bailing out badly run companies.The Fed is justifying its move as help to companies that are caught in a situation not of their making, said Nellie Liang, former head of the Fed’s financial stability office and now at the Brookings Institution think-tank.“It is a question of limiting losses,” Liang said in a webinar last week organized by Princeton University.But the pressure on the Fed and Treasury to lend to riskier borrowers is only likely to increase if quarantines, stay-at-home orders and other economy-killing restrictions persist.A nearly empty 7th Avenue in Times Square is seen at rush hour after it was announced that Broadway shows will cancel performances due to the coronavirus outbreak in New York, United States, on March 12, 2020. (REUTERS/Mike Segar)In the weeks ahead, the pool of high-grade borrowers currently allowed in the program will likely shrink.The three major credit ratings agencies – Moody’s, S&P and Fitch – are certain to cut a number of companies now at the lowest tiers of investment grade into junk territory, as happened last week to Ford Motor Co.That could become an issue, said Kathy Bostjancic, chief US economist at forecasting and analysis firm Oxford Economics.“You can argue there is a need and the Fed has a lot more insurance backing from the US Treasury” to delve into the riskier part of the bond market, Bostjancic said.“However, it could entail significant losses and so risky for the Fed and they might stay away from it,” she said.Topics : The Federal Reserve has offered more than US$3 trillion in loans and asset purchases in recent weeks to stop the US financial system from seizing up, but it has not yet directly helped large swaths of the real economy: companies, municipalities and other borrowers with less than perfect credit.That is partly because America’s central bank is not allowed to take much credit risk itself, and loans to lower-rated borrowers have a higher chance of losses. The risk is exacerbated by efforts to stop the spread of coronavirus which have brought economic activity to a screeching halt.To alleviate that constraint, the US Treasury – whose job it is to manage the government’s finances and help the Fed keep the economy steady – has taken on some of the risk that Fed loans will not be paid back. It has contributed about US$50 billion from a pool of money called the Exchange Stabilization Fund. That money will be used to absorb losses from Fed loans that go bad. Assuming only a fraction of loans will default, the Treasury contribution has allowed the Fed to lend much more without taking on additional risk.On Friday, the Treasury got about $450 billion more from Congress as part of a $2.2 trillion US stimulus package, greatly increasing its ability to support the economy. Before the bill passed, the stabilization fund had about $93 billion in assets as of the end of February.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Fox News on Sunday he believed the additional funds could help the Fed and Treasury provide about $4 trillion in loans.Read also: More cash aid, stimuli needed to soften economic shocks of COVID-19: Economistslast_img read more

Japan “on the brink” as it struggles to hold back coronavirus

first_img“Many experts expressed very strong sense of crisis and opinions over the spread of infections in Tokyo and the current state of medical preparedness,” Nishimura told reporters.”We must prevent infections from spreading further no matter what. We have come to the edge of edges, to the very brink.”The governor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, has requested that residents of the city of nearly 14 million people stay indoors and avoid restaurants and bars.”People are saying ‘I didn’t think I would get infected myself’. I want everyone to share the awareness that one should both protect oneself while also avoiding spreading [the virus],” she said.A Bank of Japan poll showed the mood of industrial manufacturers at its most pessimistic for seven years.Calls for a lockdown are increasing on social media, with many Twitter users expressing worry and citing much more drastic measures in foreign cities.”One of my friends, who works in Tokyo, is still commuting on packed trains,” wrote a user under the Twitter handle Arikan.”I’m a little embarrassed by how indecisive Japan is compared to other nations.”Media reported the possibility schools would remain closed until May. The government first closed public schools at Abe’s request from March 2. The Tokyo metropolitan government had said it was planning to re-open at least some schools when the new academic year began in April. Japan is struggling to hold the line against the coronavirus and is on the brink of crisis with medical experts particularly worried about preparations in Tokyo, officials said on Wednesday, raising the prospect of emergency lockdowns.Japan has some 2,200 cases of the coronavirus and 66 deaths, relatively small tallies compared with those of United States, China and some parts of Europe.But the new infections are appearing relentlessly, with 105 reported on Wednesday, 65 of them in the capital, where cases are closely watched as increasing numbers there add to pressure on the government to take drastic steps. “We are barely holding the line and remain at a critical point where virus cases could surge if we let down our guard,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a parliamentary committee.He is set to hold a meeting of his coronavirus task force later on Wednesday.Abe is under pressure from the public to declare a state of emergency that would allow authorities to impose lockdowns and restrict movements, but on a voluntary, not a legally binding, basis.Economics Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said infectious disease experts were alarmed about medical preparations in Tokyo, which now has about 500 cases.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Tin mining giant Timah to cut costs, complete smelter to endure downturn

first_imgState-owned tin miner PT Timah plans to cut costs and finish the construction of a smelter in an effort to turn its fortunes around after the company lost money last year.The publicly listed company announced on Thursday that it planned to deleverage debt, reprofile bank loans and cut costs “in all lines of production”. The company also planned to continue developing a multimillion dollar tin smelter on Bangka island at the behest of the government and to keep exporting the mineral strategically. Its revenue, however, jumped 75 percent year-on-year (yoy) to Rp 19.3 trillion while its costs rose 83 percent to Rp 18.16 trillion.“Other than the trade war, which continues until today, the COVID-19 pandemic has major potential to affect global tin prices,” said Timah corporate secretary Abdullah Umar, referring to the United States-China trade war.China is the world’s top importer of tin, a metal mostly used for soldering.Global tin prices closed at $16,855 per ton on Thursday at the benchmark London Metal Exchange (LME). Prices have rebounded from those of March but remain half of the pre-trade war price.Timah’s shares, traded on the Indonesian Stock Exchange (IDX), had fallen 0.86 percent during the trading day as of 2:43 p.m. Jakarta time on Friday as the benchmark Jakarta Composite Index (JCI) gained 0.1 percent. The stocks have lost almost 30 percent of their value so far this year.Topics : “We have to be selective in responding to the dynamism of the global tin market,” said Timah president director Riza Pahlevi Tabrani in a statement.Riza told reporters late last year that Timah would cut export volumes by up to 2,500 metric tons each month to optimize earnings amid variable global tin prices. Timah, one of the world’s top tin miners, began the construction of its new tin smelter on Jan. 30. The US$80 million facility is expected to yield 40,000 tons of crude tin yearly when completed in 2021. The development of the smelter is part of the government’s policy to transform Indonesia into an industrial economy.Timah booked a loss of Rp 703.97 billion ($49.4 million) last year, down from a profit of Rp 278.88 billion the previous year. The miner attributed the loss mainly to depressed global tin prices since January 2019.last_img read more

Trump signs order pushing to reduce US police violence

first_imgPraise for police Trump began by announcing he’d just met in private with families of several black people killed in encounters with the police.”We are one nation. We grieve together and we heal together,” he said.However, Trump’s choice to keep the televised audience overwhelmingly white, male and focused on law enforcement representatives reinforced his main message.”Americans know the truth: without police, there is chaos,” Trump said. Only a “very tiny” number of police commit wrongdoing, he said in remarks that frequently veered into a campaign speech about his accomplishments.Democrats and civil rights groups say that full-scale rethinking of police culture, and even cuts in police funding, are needed to bring necessary change.A first wave of unrest began more than three weeks ago, after the May 25 death of George Floyd, an African-American man, in Minneapolis.Floyd stopped breathing when a white officer kneeled on his neck, having already handcuffed him during arrest for a minor offense. Amateur video of the incident sparked demonstrations nationwide and in some places looting and arson.New tension erupted last week after the death in Atlanta, Georgia, of Rayshard Brooks, another African American whom police say was shot in the back as he ran away from arresting officers, having grabbed one of their tasers and aimed it at them.The Black Lives Matter movement has spun off into attacks by activists against statues commemorating figures from colonial and slavery eras. On Monday a man was shot when a heavily armed right-wing group tried to defend a statue of a 16th century Spanish conquistador in Albuquerque, local media reported. His executive order encourages de-escalation training, better recruitment, sharing of data on police who have bad records, and money to support police in complicated duties related to people with mental or drug issues.A highlight of Trump’s proposals, which he said could be complemented by legislation being negotiated in the Republican-controlled Senate, was ending choke holds “except if an officer’s life is at risk,” he said.Trump called his initiative “a tremendous step” toward “safe, beautiful and elegant justice.”Critics, including the Democratic speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, derided his efforts. US President Donald Trump issued an order to improve policing Tuesday, calling for a ban on dangerous choke holds, but he stopped well short of demands made at nationwide protests against racism and police brutality.”We have to break old patterns of failure,” Trump said in a Rose Garden ceremony attended by police and Republican congressional allies, though no black civil rights representatives or political opponents.The president has limited power over policing, which is run mostly at a state and local level. However, Trump said that he would use access to federal funding grants as leverage to persuade departments “to adopt the highest professional standards.” Topics :center_img Campaign slogan Trump has struck a hardline tone throughout the tense period, sparking uproar even from his own party with his warning that he could send federal troops to cities unable to control the crowds.The president clearly felt that the tough approach played well with his base, a passionately loyal minority of the electorate that he hopes will power him to a win, however narrow, in November. The slogan “law and order” has become a new pillar of his reelection campaign platform.Trump’s frequently lukewarm attempts to express empathy for the fear and powerlessness that many black Americans say they feel on a daily basis when encountering police left a vacuum that his Democratic opponent Joe Biden is seeking to fill.Biden’s campaign released a statement Tuesday calling Trump’s executive order “insufficient,” and slamming the president for dismantling many police reforms started under President Barack Obama.Trump “isn’t delivering the comprehensive policing reform we need,” Biden’s statement said. “The president’s weak executive order falls sadly and seriously short of what is required to combat the epidemic of racial injustice and police brutality,” she said in a statement. “During this moment of national anguish, we must insist on bold change, not meekly surrender to the bare minimum.”last_img read more

Europe-wide study shows child virus deaths ‘extremely rare’

first_imgFewer than one in a hundred children who test positive for COVID-19 end up dying although a small but significant percentage develop severe illness, a new Europe-wide study showed Friday.A team of researchers led by experts in Britain, Austria and Spain looked at the outcomes of nearly 600 children under 18 infected with the novel coronavirus and found that only a quarter had pre-existing medical conditions. This is in sharp contrast to adults, among whom the vast majority of patients have underlying health problems.  Topics : “The case fatality cohort was very low and it is likely to be substantially lower still, given many children with mild disease would not have been brought to medical attention and therefore not included in this study,” he said.”Overall, the vast majority of children and young people experience only mild disease,” added Tebruegge, lead author of the study published in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health journal. “Nevertheless a notable number of children do develop severe disease and require intensive care support, and this should be accounted for when planning and prioritizing healthcare resources as the pandemic progresses.”The most common symptom among children in the study was fever (65 percent), followed by upper respiratory tract infection (54 percent) while 25 percent had pneumonia. Age is known to be a key risk factor for COVID-19 patients and children have been far less severely affected than adults since the pandemic’s outset. But the study found a small number of children infected with additional respiratory viruses at the same time as COVID-19, and these were more than three times more likely to require intensive care than those with COVID-19 alone. “This could have important implications for the upcoming winter season, when cold and flu infections will be more common,” said paper author Begona Santiago-Garcia from Spain’s University Hospital Gregorio.center_img The team found that more than 60 percent of COVID-19 positive children required hospital treatment, and that 8 percent needed intensive care.Of the 582 children studied, just four died.On the other hand, more than 90 children, or 16 percent, showed no symptoms at all. Marc Tebruegge, from University College London’s Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health, said that while the results shouldn’t be extrapolated for the general population, they were nevertheless reassuring.last_img read more

Tokyo declares coronavirus red alert as situation ‘rather severe’

first_imgTopics : The infection rate in Tokyo is at stage “red”, the highest of four levels in the metropolis’ system, Koike said, citing the analysis by health experts who cautioned earlier in the day that infections were going up quite a bit and “exceeding peaks”.She also pledged to step up testing for the virus by utilizing equipment at universities.”My understanding is that we’re in a rather severe situation now,” Koike said.Infections among young people and asymptomatic cases are rising in Tokyo, health experts have noted. Fearing a second wave of infections spreading from the capital, local municipalities, opposition lawmakers and social media users have asked the central government to suspend a major “Go To” travel aid campaign that aims to boost domestic tourism.Leaders of some rural towns say that driven by the campaign, travel in and out of high-risk regions like Tokyo may lead to widespread community transmissions.There were reports in local media of Tokyo residents being asked to stay away from parents and relatives living in rural towns that have reported fewer coronavirus cases.The pandemic in Japan will turn into a “man-made” disaster should the travel program go ahead, Soichiro Miyashita, mayor of the city of Mutsu in Aomori Prefecture, has warned.But Japan’s economy minister, Yasutoshi Nishimura, said the government will cautiously proceed with the campaign, which includes discounts for shopping and food.”Obviously we will consider the thoughts of many of our people, while monitoring the situation ahead,” Nishimura, who leads the government’s coronavirus policy, told parliament.The program, among the government’s top initiatives to stimulate economic activity and set to start this month, has also come under fire over costs as it subcontracts back-office work to a private contractor.Koike urged the government to reconsider the timing for the campaign at the press conference.Resurgent virusInfections are rising in other parts of Japan too, with Osaka prefecture in the west reporting 61 new cases on Wednesday, broadcaster NHK said, marking the highest number of daily cases there since April 20.In Tokyo, daily virus cases exceeded 200 in four of the past seven days, touching a record of 243 last Friday as testing among nightclub workers in its red-light districts showed rising infections among people in their 20s and 30s.Koike reiterated that people should avoid restaurants that lack proper infection-control measures.Health experts noted Tokyo hospitals were getting crowded as the number of patients doubled from the previous week.Tokyo’s latest cluster has been traced to a theatre with at least 37 cases in Shinjuku, a busy entertainment area and home to one of Asia’s biggest red-light districts which has been the center of a recent spike in infections.center_img Tokyo raised its coronavirus alert to the highest “red” level on Wednesday, alarmed by a recent spike in daily new cases to record highs, with Governor Yuriko Koike describing the situation in the Japanese capital as “rather severe”.The resurgence of the virus in Tokyo could add to the growing pressure on policymakers to shore up the world’s No.3 economy, which analysts say is set to shrink at its fastest pace in decades this fiscal year due to the pandemic.”We are in a situation where we should issue warnings to citizens and businesses,” Koike told a press conference, urging residents to refrain from unnecessary travel.last_img read more

Jokowi pledges to protect human rights, environment

first_imgCritics of the bill said some of its provisions would dismantle the protection of workers and laws to protect the environment.On Thursday, the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) urged the President and the House of Representatives to stop the deliberation of the bill, one of the President’s flagship legislation efforts, saying it had the potential to violate human rights.Komnas HAM said it had found several areas of concern, including the potential rolling back of worker protections, the expansion of central government powers and threats to environmental protection, and that the bill’s criminal provisions would unfairly benefit the rich.Also on Thursday, labor groups said they planned to hold a massive protest in front of the House compound to demand that the government and House stop the deliberation of the bill. They would still stage the protest despite agreeing with the House to form a team with members of the working committee of the bill, which is aimed at finding common ground on changes to the 2003 Labor Law proposed in the bill.The labor groups and the lawmakers are set to hold the team’s first meeting on Aug. 18, according to the Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (KSPI).A member of the House Legislative Body (Baleg), Hendrawan Supratikno, said lawmakers had resolved the deliberation of 75 percent of the draft, explaining that public hearings during the House’s recess period had been quite effective in smoothing matters out.”It will be passed before the next recess [of the current sitting period] on Oct. 9,” said the politician of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P).Topics : “All policies must focus on environmental friendliness and promote the protection of human rights,” he said.Jokowi went on to say that the government had always made serious efforts of corruption eradication and added that measures to prevent corruption had be intensified through simple, transparent and efficient governance.“The law must be enforced without discrimination. The upholding of democratic values cannot be compromised. Democracy must continue without disrupting the speed of work and legal certainty, as well as the noble values of our nation,” he said.With his speech, Jokowi appears to respond to criticism over how his government has pressed ahead with the deliberation of controversial bills, including the omnibus bill on jobs. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has pledged to produce policies that protect human rights and the environment, noting that speed and accuracy should not be exchanged for “carelessness and arbitrariness”.Dressed in traditional Sabu attire from East Nusa Tenggara, the President delivered the speech during an annual state of the nation address before members of the country’s executive, legislative and judicial branches at the House of Representatives compound in Senayan, Central Jakarta, on Friday.He said high flexibility and simple bureaucracy should never be achieved by sacrificing legal certainty, anticorruption efforts and democracy.last_img read more