Game plan

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Lincoln: Lincoln convertible

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Strong BL condemns government

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PREMIUMOverreaction to coronavirus will bring about negative consequences: Chinese envoy

first_imgFacebook LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here Linkedin Log in with your social account Indonesia’s relationship with China looks to take another turbulent turn after the resident Chinese envoy warned Jakarta not to “overreact” in efforts to halt the spread of the deadly 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), just shortly before officials announced a ban on livestock imports from China.Beijing has stepped up efforts to reassure countries around the world that it can control an outbreak that has spread to some two dozen countries and killed more than 420 people, amid a flurry of travel bans and other measures it may deem detrimental to the Chinese economy.Indonesia is among the few countries that may prove to be a crucial link in keeping China’s economic gears spinning, with Chinese Ambassador Xiao Qian warning on Tuesday that any overreaction would inevitably harm Indonesia’s relations with China as well as its own economy.Citing a Wor… Forgot Password ? Google Topics : Wuhan-coronavirus Wuhan-coronavirus-in-Indonesia China-Indonesialast_img read more

Chief Pancasila campaigner wants to replace ‘assalamu ‘alaikum’ as national greeting

first_img“We were already comfortable with ‘good morning’. But since reformasi, we have replaced it with ‘assalamu ‘alaikum’ in any place no matter if Christians or Hindus are [in the audience],” he said, referring to the reform movement following the downfall of president Soeharto.“Because when it reached a point where it had become extreme, the new way emerged on the use of greetings of different religions,” Yudian said, pointing at President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s signature greeting style.It is common practice for President Jokowi — who is Muslim — and many government officials to open their speeches with a litany of traditional religious greetings. They start with “assalamu ‘alaikum” for Muslims, “shalom” for Christians, “om swastiastu” for Hindus, “namo buddhaya” for Buddhists and “salam kebajikan” or “wei de dong tian”for Confucians.However, Yudian admitted that he personally preferred the greeting of “salam Pancasila”, which he claimed was created by Yudi Latief, an Indonesian activist and young intellectual whose writing works often raised the theme of the state ideology. Agency for Pancasila Ideology Education (BPIP) head Yudian Wahyudi has drawn public controversy after saying that “assalamu ‘alaikum” could be replaced by “salam Pancasila” as a national greeting during an exclusive interview with detik.com.The academic and rector of Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University in Yogyakarta believed that “salam Pancasila” would be able to represent the greetings of all official religions recognized in Indonesia. Yudian’s choice was derived from his reflection on the relationship between Pancasila and religion.Read also: ‘Pancasila’s biggest enemy is religion’: Indonesia’s ideology chief’s comment sparks outcryIn the beginning of the interview, he lamented religious groups and those using religion as a political tool to further personal interests during the transition period from the New Order.Since the Reform Era, he said, political parties and mass organizations were allowed to adopt religious ideologies rather than Pancasila. From that point on, he said, the state ideology had been “annihilated” at the administrative level.“Therefore, religion is the biggest threat to Pancasila,” he said.In response to Yudian’s remarks, former forestry minister MS Kaban said the BPIP’s proposal to replace the greetings of Muslims had gone too far that the agency should be dissolved.usulan BPIP gantikan salam kaum muslimin sudah keterlaluan, satu kalimat bubarkan BPIP anti agama.Sejarah menunjukkan yg suka gugat agama khususnya islam itu jls2 PKI,Komunis anti agama.Tolak kehadiran BPIP.Ayo debat terbuka BPIP.Knpa BPIP bawa Pancasila musuh agama.— MS Kaban (@hmskaban) February 21, 2020“One sentence, disperse the anti-religion BPIP. History shows that those who don’t like religion, especially Islam, are clearly communists,” he wrote on his Twitter account @hmskaban on Friday.Jokowi appointed Yudian as BPIP head earlier this month in the hope that the BPIP could promote Pancasila values to society, particularly among the younger generation. Yudian succeeded Yudi Latif, who stepped down in June 2018 and was temporarily replaced by vice chairman Hariyono as acting chairman. (syk)Topics :last_img read more

Japanese man’s COVID-19 case raises concerns about Indonesia’s detection ability

first_imgA Japanese national has reportedly tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus after visiting Indonesia, raising concerns about the country’s ability to detect carriers of the deadly virus.Because of this incident, Indonesian authorities are being urged to take swift actions to prevent its spread.Bayu Krisnamurthi, who headed the National Committee for Avian Flu Control and Pandemic Preparedness between 2006 and 2010, said the Japanese man could have transmitted the virus to others in Indonesia through droplets expelled by coughs and sneezes. “The health authorities should quickly clarify this case. It should be assumed that the virus could have been contracted by someone else before the symptoms appeared,” Bayu told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.Previously, Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported that the Japanese man was in his 60s, lived in Tokyo and worked at a senior care facility.The man visited a healthcare facility in Japan on Feb. 12 after developing “cold-like symptoms” but was sent home after he was not diagnosed with pneumonia. He then worked on Feb. 13, spent Feb. 14 at home and reportedly traveled to Indonesia on a family vacation on Feb. 15.The NHK report did not specify the man’s itinerary while in Indonesia. The man returned to Japan on Feb. 19 and was soon hospitalized for having severe difficulty in breathing. He was said to be in “serious condition”.Separately, the Tokyo Novel Coronavirus Infectious Disease Control Center of the Tokyo Metropolitan government’s website confirmed that a Tokyo resident in his 60s had tested positive for the disease and that his symptoms appeared on Feb. 12.The release does not mention any travel history to Indonesia, only that the man had not been to China within the previous 14 days. The patient’s condition was listed as serious.The man was the 29th case of COVID-19 recorded in Tokyo.Meanwhile, the Indonesian Health Ministry’s disease control and environment health directorate general secretary, Achmad Yurianto, said the ministry had contacted the Indonesian Embassy (KBRI) in Tokyo to seek confirmation about the Japanese man, but his identity remained unknown.“We neither know his name nor which part of Indonesia [he visited]. So what can we investigate?” Yurianto told the Post on Sunday.Foreign Ministry acting spokesperson Teuku “Faiz” Faizasyah said that there had been no official communication with the Japanese authorities about the man.The Post tried to contact the Indonesian Embassy in Tokyo by phone on Sunday, but the line only responded with an answering machine message saying to contact the embassy during business hours.“That’s the problem: Up until now there has been no information yet from Japan,” Yurianto said.Airports across the country are using thermal scanners to detect persons who have contracted the coronavirus and are requiring international arrival passengers to provide health documents in the form of general declarations. Airlines must also provide passenger manifests to officials in the health office.However, people with no health concerns on arrival might not show detectable signs of previous exposure to the coronavirus.“We could not possibly check them all, including their phlegm,” Yurianto said.Moreover, Bayu Krisnamurthi said the authorities should have already known the proper procedures for a virus outbreak, as there had been previous cases including the avian flu, the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), among others.He said the authorities should at least update the public daily about the coronavirus so people can get accurate and useful information since viruses mutate.“Citizens should also be persuaded to take preventive measures: wash hands, wear masks when sick with influenza, eat well-balanced nutritious food and, if needed, take some vitamins to increase the body’s immunity,” he said.Meanwhile, Amin Soebandrio, the director of the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, said that if the Japanese man showed no symptoms during his stay in Indonesia he could remain undetected despite already carrying the virus during the incubation period.The coronavirus’ incubation period is up to 14 days.“This is not just in Indonesia. [The man would be undetected] in any country if no symptoms show before he returned to Japan,” Amin told the Post.Amin said that persons infected with the virus during the incubation period could theoretically spread the virus, although they would not necessarily do so if they did not show any symptoms.“If the person already has the symptoms then he can [spread the virus],” Amin said.Amin said that the Indonesian government had followed proper procedures as according to the World Health Organization, including requiring health cards and quarantine travelers recently coming to China.“So the problem is not in our ability to detect [the coronavirus] or not because we have all the measures,” Amin said.The case is the second time a patient tested positive for COVID-19 after a visit to Indonesia.The first, a Chinese man identified as Jin, tested positive with the virus earlier this month, eight days after returning from Bali.According to the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE), as of Sunday evening (Jakarta time), there were 78,823 confirmed cases globally, most of whom were in China where the virus has killed 2,437 people.Outside of mainland China, a total 1,887 cases has been confirmed in 31 countries, including Hong Kong and Macau, resulting in 20 deaths.Japan had 135 confirmed cases with one dead, according to Johns Hopkins CSSE.A total of 23,364 people had recovered from the disease worldwide.Topics :last_img read more

PREMIUMJokowi’s plan to use B40 biodiesel by 2021 difficult to realize: Experts

Log in with your social account Linkedin Forgot Password ? Topics : Facebook Google LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here Experts have expressed doubt about President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s plan to increase the palm oil content in biodiesel to 40 percent on a mass scale by next year from 30 percent at present. They say producers may fail to meet the increase in demand and the quality standards.Indonesian Bioenergy Expert Association (IKABI) chairman Tatang Herman said it would take more than a year to prepare for the processing facilities to enable them to meet the technical requirements to produce biodiesel with 40 percent palm oil content.“The preparation for B30 started back in 2014, and the regulation was issued in 2015. That provides a lot of time for producers to prepare. However, the decision to upgrade to B40 is way too sudden,” he said in a public discussion on Friday.In January, Indonesia began the mandatory use of B30 biodiesel, which contains 30 percent … Indonesia biodiesel palm-oil B30-mandatory-policy B40-fuel exports EU IKABI read more

US Treasury, airlines reach deal on financial aid

first_imgWhile details of the agreement were not disclosed, a source close to the negotiations said the US government would become a minority shareholder in the airlines.In his statement, Mnuchin said the deal “will support American workers and help preserve the strategic importance of the airline industry while allowing for appropriate compensation to the taxpayers.”He added that the Treasury is evaluating applications from smaller passenger carriers and also “will provide further guidance” to cargo airlines and their contractors.Happy airlinesUS airlines hailed the agreement, with Southwest congratulating the Treasury on its move “to infuse liquidity into the economy and try to keep businesses open and people on the job – and that certainly includes the airlines and our employees.”A passengers waits for a Delta Airlines flight in Terminal 5 at Los Angeles International Airport, May 4, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (AFP/Robyn Beck)Southwest expects to receive $3.2 billion under the program, $2.3 billion of which will go towards payroll for its 60,000 employees with the balance taking the form of a low-interest loan to be repaid over 10 years.In exchange, Southwest will give the government about 2.6 million warrants – financial instruments that can be turned into stock shares and whose price was not specified but is usually fixed in advance.That is in line with a demand the Treasury made in talks on Friday for warrants to compose 10 percent of the aid each company receives, the source said, while informing airlines that they’d have to pay back 30 percent of the money they received.Airlines are also eligible for another $25 billion in loans to help them resume operations after the pandemic caused air traffic to plunge, leading carriers to suspend routes, cut back on orders and cancel hundreds of flights.American Airlines said it would apply for $4.75 billion in those loans this week, in addition to $5.8 billion received under Tuesday’s agreement with the Treasury.”The support our government has entrusted to us carries immense responsibility and an obligation that American Airlines is privileged to undertake,” the carrier’s CEO Doug Parker said in a statement. Read also: Transportation industry seeks ‘rescue package’ to weather COVID-19 impacts”It is our privilege to continue flying through the downturn and to be in a ready position as our country and the world return to the skies.”Travel hit hardAmerican and Southwest have also promised not to lay off or cut pay for their employees until the end of September – when the Treasury program finishes.In addition, the carriers said they had agreed to limits on executive compensation, share buybacks and dividend payments.The pandemic has caused the cancellation of about 80 percent of US carriers’ flights including many transatlantic routes.The International Air Transport Association said on Tuesday that passenger revenues would plunge 55 percent, or $314 billion, in 2020 due to the pandemic.Topics : United States Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and major US airlines on Tuesday reached an agreement on financial assistance amid the coronavirus pandemic, aiming to keep paying workers and avoid bankruptcies in an industry that employs 750,000 people.The Treasury came to terms with 10 airlines, including the four largest – Delta Air Lines, Americans Airlines, United Airlines and Southwest Airlines. Some were initially hesitant to accept the money for fear of nationalization despite the damage done by the pandemic, which has brought air travel to a standstill. Read also: Airports reduce hours, close terminals following sharp decline in flight trafficUS President Donald Trump said the deal means “our airlines are now in good shape, and they will get over a very tough period of time that was not caused by them.”Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin meanwhile said he was “working with the airlines to finalize the necessary agreements and disburse funds as quickly as possible.”Congress last month approved a US$2.2 trillion stimulus plan to rescue the world’s largest economy, which includes $25 billion for airlines to continue paying employees’ salaries and benefits until September 30.last_img read more

Only a COVID-19 vaccine will allow return to ‘normalcy’: UN chief

first_imgHe cited Uganda, which has given businesses more time to file their tax returns; Namibia, which provides emergency income for workers who have lost their jobs; Cape Verde, which provides food aid; and Egypt, which has reduced taxation on industries. “We need an ambitious effort to ensure that international stakeholders operate through a harmonized, integrated and leveraged approach to maximize the speed and scale needed for the universal deployment of such a vaccine by the end of 2020,” he insisted. Guterres said his appeal on March 25 for $2 billion in donations for a comprehensive UN humanitarian response to the pandemic had so far raised about 20 percent of that amount. Through the World Health Organization, the United Nations has been able to equip 47 African countries with COVID-19 tests, he said. The UN chief also praised the efforts of several African governments to mitigate the consequences of the pandemic. A COVID-19 vaccine may be the only thing that can bring back “normalcy,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Wednesday, hoping for just that before the end of the year. “A safe and effective vaccine may be the only tool that can return the world to a sense of ‘normalcy,’ saving millions of lives and countless trillions of dollars,” he added during a video conference with the 50 or so African countries that are members of the United Nations.He called for its accelerated development and accessibility to all, adding it must have a “universal global benefit” and “allow us to control the pandemic.” center_img Topics :last_img read more

Government disburses $4.5m in village funds as cash aid for poor families

first_imgTopics : Upon being questioned how the government would oversee the disbursement of cash transfers, Abdul said that the government “trusted village officials and volunteers to oversee the disbursement process”.Concerns have grown over the disbursement of the government’s social aid program to weather the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.“If the COVID-19 aid funds are misused by state officials, such as regents, mayors, governors or ministers and their respective deputies, it will be difficult because the KPK [Corruption Eradication Commission] is very procedural; it needs to report to the President in handling those cases,” former KPK deputy chief Mochammad Jasin said on Wednesday, warning that corruption could occur with so much aid being distributed during the current health crisis.The government has set aside Rp 436.1 trillion for stimulus programs, equivalent to 2.5 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), including Rp 110 trillion for social safety nets. According to Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Ministerial Regulation No 6/2020, the government has allocated Rp 22.4 trillion from a total of Rp 71.19 trillion in village funds to disburse cash transfers for 12.3 million families affected by the crisis.The government will provide Rp 600,000 a month for three months to families that meet certain criteria, including whose members have lost their jobs and do not receive assistance from the Family Hope Program (PKH) and the staple-food card program.Villages with village fund allocations of up to Rp 800 million must set aside 25 percent of the money for COVID-19 cash assistance, while villages with funds of Rp 800 million to Rp 1.2 billion must set aside 30 percent from their budget. Villages with funds of more than Rp 1.2 billion must set aside 35 percent from their budget to provide the cash transfers, Abdul said.“This does not mean that the villages cannot disburse more funds; they can increase the transfer if needed,” said Abdul. “We are hoping that the disbursement will be smooth as we need to prioritize humanitarian efforts.”center_img The government has disbursed around Rp 70 billion (US$4.5 million) in cash assistance for some 116,000 families using village funds to help them cope with the severe economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Minister Abdul Halim Iskandar said 8,157 villages in 76 districts nationwide had disbursed Rp 600,000 to each registered family through both cashless and cash transfers.“As we are currently in a national emergency, I am asking regional leaders to facilitate poor families to receive the cash assistance by prioritizing humanitarian efforts,” Abdul told reporters during a press briefing on Monday.last_img read more