12
February

Kuala Lumpur - Senior investigator of Indonesia's Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) Novel Baswedan received the International Anti-Corruption Award 2020 from the Perdana International Anti-Corruption Champion Fund (PIACCF) to honor his commitment, bravery, and sacrifice in combating corruption in Indonesia.

Malaysian Prime Minister Dr.Mahathir Mohamad gave the award to Baswedan and Kevin Morais, deputy public prosecutor for the Attorney General's Chambers of Malaysia and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) who was murdered in 2015, in the launching ceremony of the PIACCF in Putrajaya on Tuesday evening.

Baswedan who suffered an acid attack while he was heading home after performing Fajr, or the dawn prayer, at a mosque near his house on April 11, 2017 said he thanked PIACCF for its attention, support, and appreciation.

The award given to him by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad was not merely a real support and appreciation for him personally but also for all people who had chosen a road for fighting the corruption anywhere, Baswedan said.

Despite the risks and threats posed to those consistently combating corruption, the world's attention given to them was expected to become a new power for all people who had dedicated themselves to the fight against corruption, he said.

Founded to support and protect officials who are members of the International Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities (IAACA), the PIACCF is relevant to the goal of the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), which is the only legally binding international anti-corruption multilateral treaty.

At the launching ceremony, which was also attended by, among others, UN Resident Coordinator Stefan Priesner and IAACA's representative Martin Kruetner, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad was accompanied by his wife, Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Binti Hj Mohd Ali.

Novel Baswedan, the Indonesian anti-graft body's senior investigator, was assaulted by two motorcyclists on April 11, 2017. As a result, he should have received medical treatment for his eyes in Jakarta and Singapore.

The two motorcyclists, reportedly behind the acid attack, managed to escape. These two suspects, who are police officers, were apprehended in Depok, West Java, on Dec 26, 2019 or more than a month after General Idham Azis was inaugurated as the Indonesian police chief to replace Tito Karnavian who was appointed to be the home minister.

Baswedan, a retired police officer, joined the KPK in 2007. Since then, he had been frequently terrorized and attacked.
(ANTARA)

12
February

Jakarta - Indonesia’s government urged people to not harbor concerns over 238 Indonesians to be reunited with families in their provinces of origin after their 14-day quarantine in Natuna, Riau Islands Province, and declared healthy by authorities.

"We do not need to be worried. Do not worry," Social Affairs Minister Juliari Peter Batubara notified journalists here on Tuesday in connection with the government's plan to send them home to reunite with their respective families after completing their 14-day quarantine period.

Batubara attempted to convince the people at large, saying that those, under strict observation during the 14-day quarantine period in Natuna and confirmed to be healthy by the Health Ministry, would be allowed to return to their hometowns and reunite with their families.

"Hence, if they have been permitted to go home, then it is a guarantee that there is no need to be worried about," he noted. Hence, the people, at large, were urged to avoid harboring concerns over the health of their countrymen currently quarantined in Natuna following their evacuation from Wuhan, China, on Feb 2, he stated.

Early this week, the Coordinating Human Development and Culture Ministry had held a technical meeting for talks on the planned return of Indonesians to their provinces of origin after concluding their quarantine period in Natuna and declared healthy by the health authorities.

In connection with the planned return of 238 Indonesians in Natuna, the South Sulawesi provincial administration has been adopting precautionary measures since three of the 238 evacuees recently airlifted from Wuhan, China's epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak, are the residents of Bulukumba District.

"We have coordinated with the provincial health office. We are taking precautionary measures and are preparing for their return from Natuna District after they complete their 14-day coronavirus incubation period," he had noted on Feb 5.

The provincial administration should ensure they are in good health after being quarantined, so that they can be united with their families in Bulukumba, he remarked.

Abdullah remarked that a special team had been prepared, with members comprising those from the South Sulawesi provincial and Bulukumba district administrations.

The Indonesian government had brought 238 Indonesians home. They were airlifted using a chartered aircraft and arrived in Batam City, Riau Islands Province, on Sunday, February 2. On the same day, they were all flown to Natuna and quarantined.

Before their departure, the health of these 238 Indonesian evacuees had been thoroughly examined by the Chinese authorities before being allowed to board the aircraft.

The Chinese health authorities confirmed that they were all in good health and could be airlifted, according to Indonesian Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto. There were seven other Indonesians, who did not join the evacuation.

Four of the seven were offered the opportunity to join the emergency evacuation but refused since they felt more comfortable there, while three others failed the health examinations by Chinese authorities, Putranto stated.

The coronavirus disease has posed a serious challenge to mainland China, as death toll from this virus outbreak climbed to 1,017, while as of Tuesday, according to The New York Times, the number of reported confirmed COVID-19 infections in China had reached at least 42,700.
(ANTARA)

12
February

Jakarta - The novel coronavirus outbreak has become a new challenge for the world's economy and Indonesia is predicted to suffer a slowdown in its economic growth of around 0.23 percent as a result of China's downturn of one percent, an Indonesian official said. The prediction that the Indonesian Trade Ministry had made was lower than that of the world, Head of the ministry's Trade Research and Development Division Kasan said here Tuesday commenting on the impact of the virus outbreak on Indonesia's economy.

The World Bank has predicted that Indonesia's economic growth might suffer a downturn of up to 0.3 percent as a result of this new coronavirus outbreak whose epicenter is in the Chinese city of Wuhan, the capital of Hubei Province, he said.

Kasan argued that in every one percent of China's downturn in its gross domestic product, Indonesia was predicted to face a slowdown of around 0.23 percent. This calculation was made based on scientific findings.

Thus, if China's economic growth was predicted to decline from six to five percent, for instance, Indonesia's economic growth which had earlier been presumed to reach around 5.3 percent this year would likely be corrected, he added.

This new coronavirus outbreak would also affect the performance of Indonesia's exports and imports in January 2020. Several other countries might also suffer the same predicted situation as some of Indonesia's trading partners had released their data.

The data that five or six countries had released showed that they underwent a significant decrease in their respective exports and imports.

The countries whose export and import performance was affected by the coronavirus outbreak included Brazil, Vietnam, South Korea, Chile, and Pakistan, he added.

This deadly virus may not merely affect Indonesia's trade but also its investment. However, the Investment Coordination Board (BKPM) Head Bahlil Lahadalia opined that it has not yet shown any significant impact on the inflow of China's investments into Indonesia.

Apart from that, the government is examining measures necessarily taken to anticipate any potential decrease, he recently said.

In 2019, with total investment worth US$4.7 billion, China ranked second after Singapore as the biggest contributor of foreign investment for Indonesia. Singapore's total investments were recorded at $6.5 billion.

Japan is ranked third with a total investment of $4.3 billion while Hong Kong ranked fourth ($2.9 billion). It was followed by the Netherlands with investments of $2.6 billion. 
(ANTARA)

11
February

Efforts to evacuate victims of an Mi-17 helicopter that crashed on Mount Mandala, Oksob Sub-district, Pegunungan Bintang District, Papua Province, were hindered by bad weather, according to an official.

In addition to the bad weather, difficult terrain posed an obstacle to the evacuation operation, Col. Infantry Binsar Sianipar, commander of the military regional command (Korem) 172/PWY, stated here on Tuesday.

The ill-fated helicopter is believed to be in a mountainous area at 12,500 feet above sea level, with a slope of around 90 degrees, or perpendicular.

A helicopter, earlier deployed to locate the Mi-17 helicopter, managed to spot it only once while being airborne and was compelled to return to Oksibil owing to bad weather, Sianipar stated, adding that most likely, the rescuers must head to the location on foot.

Mapping was being conducted to find the closest point to drop personnel for the evacuation operation.

The military has also sought assistance from local residents aware of the way to the location.

"Aerial and land evacuation will very likely continue on Wednesday (Feb 12) by deploying three Indonesian Army helicopters and a civilian helicopter belonging to Demonim Air," Sianipar remarked.

The Russia-made military helicopter, operated by the Indonesian Army Aviation Center, with 12 passengers aboard, including five members of the 725 Infantry Battalion/WRG, went missing during its flights from Oksibil to Sentani, Papua, on June 28, 2019. (ANTARA)

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