Bali Quarantine Extended To 7 Days For International Arrivals
The Indonesian government has extended the quarantine for international arrivals to 7 days to prevent transmission of new Omicron Covid-19 variant.
The Central government through the Coordinator of Maritime and Investment Minister, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan has revised the entry requirement policy by extending the quarantine time for international travelers to seven days. This extended quarantine was added as a prevention measure to stop the spread of the new Covid-19 variant called Omicron. According to early research, the new variant recently found in South Africa and now around the world could be more transmissible and evade vaccines.
From the previously implemented 3 day quarantine, Luhut extended the quarantine time to 7 days for both international travelers and Indonesian citizens who have recently traveled from other countries outside Indonesia. Travelers who have recently traveled from 11 countries with high risk of Omicron variant transmission such as Hong Kong, South Africa, Malawi, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Eswatini, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Lesotho are now required to undergo 14 days of quarantine upon arrival.
The Head of Badung Hotel and Restaurant Association, IGN Rai Suryawijaya stated that this policy was a perfect step to anticipate the third wave of Covid-19 transmission in Bali. “We can totally understand as this new Covid-19 variant has become a third wave of Covid-19 transmission in several European countries and Israel.” Suryawijaya said on Monday (29/11).
However, he said the new policy will further affect the Bali tourism sector. Bali is also facing a partial lockdown for the holidays plus tourism businesses will already be under more strict measures and operate with more restrictions.
“I must admit that this will impact our tourism industry as people become more reluctant to travel, but we still may have a few domestic tourists that come in December.” Suryawijaya concluded. (thebalisun.com 30/30/2021)
Bali Governor Receives Person Of The Year Award
Bali Governor, I Wayan Koster received an award as Person of The Year 2021 in the category of ‘Best Governor for Healthcare and Action Against The Pandemic’.
During an event that was hosted on Wednesday evening (24/11)Indonesian TV station, Metro TV selected 1 out of 8 Governors from 8 different provincial governments in Indonesia including Jakarta, West Java, Central Java, East Java, South East Sulawesi, Riau, Bangka Belitung and Jambi to appreciate their hard work in handling the Covid-19 pandemic in their areas.
Metro TV also granted awards to the other Governors in several different categories such as Best Governor for Inclusive Economic Growth, Best Governor for E-Gov & Digital Innovation, and Best Governor for Empowerment & Education. Additionally, Bali was considered as province with the highest rate of Covid-19 vaccine distribution among the other provinces.
Bali was considered to have the best prevention protocol implementation, the best partial lockdown implementation, the fastest CHSE (Clean, Health, Safety and Environment) certification and implemented strict punishment in prevention protocols including fines and deportation.
Koster said that this achievement was the result of the team work that was done by all the elements in the provincial government. “I really want to thank to the Head of Bali Military Officer IX/Udayana, The Head of Bali Police Department, Bali High Court and all the Village Officials across the island for their hard work to make this achievement possible.” Koster said.
Koster claims to have successfully supported the Bali economic sector by helping small local industries including Bali traditional liquor, Endek woven fabric, traditional salt industry as well as encouraging the people to utilize the local agricultural and marine products on the island.
Bali Tourist Group Struck By Landslide Near Popular Rafting Area
A group of domestic and international tourists were caught in a landslide at a popular rafting spot in Payangan on Thursday afternoon (25/11).
The Head of Payangan Police Department, AKP I Putu Ady Wijaya confirmed that a group of tourists who have been identified as Martin Indrawijaya (aged 42), Finna Lianty (aged 38), Nuryanti (aged 36), Julius Hans Wijaya (aged 10), Marvel Sanjaya (aged 8) from Tangerang, Banten and a Swedish national named Cleas Henry Jinback (aged 55) were struck by a landslide at one of the popular rafting areas in Payangan, Gianyar.
Prior to the incident this group of tourists had planned to raft the Ayung River that is located in Payangan on Thursday afternoon at around 12:00pm. After walking down 500 steps to the starting point, they decided to cancel their plan as the pouring rain made the current too strong for rafting. Shortly after starting to climb the hill to return around 2:00pm, the unstable ground began crumbling and collapsed beneath them.
Jinback, Martin and his wife, Finna who were in front of their children (Julius and Marvel) realized the potential danger, they immediately jumped to a safer area, while the rest of them were caught in the landslide. “During the evacuation, Julius and Nuryati were already lifeless when we found them, while the other victim, Marvel hasn’t been found.” AKP Ady WIjaya said on Thursday evening.
Meanwhile the Head of Bali Search and Rescue (Basarnas), Gede Darmada confirmed that he immediately deployed a rescue team after receiving a report about the incident from one of the relatives of the victims at 2:55pm. Darmada was forced to stop the search due to poor weather conditions and relaunched the search this morning.
River Waste Polluting West Bali Beaches
Beaches In Jembrana, West Bali have been polluted by huge piles of waste that are drifting down rivers due to heavy rains. While there was originally a debate that river pollution was blamed on mass tourism, that isn’t the case due to the borders being closed.
The impact of the heavy rains are being seen on some beaches in the Jembrana region. Pebuahan Beach that is located in Banyubiru Village has been polluted by waste that was carried by the rivers.
“Many logs, tree branches, garbage and plastic is polluting our beach, causing the water to be covered in the waste.” said one of the residents.
Nearby residents said that this is actually an annual problem in the Jembrana coastal area as the rain intensity tends to increase at the end of the year.
“I must admit that this is a common problem in our area, but apparently the issue is even worse this year, as a large amounts of waste is covering the water from the shore to the open ocean.” said the resident.
Tourists are reluctant to visit the beach in Jembrana region at this time of year. “The number of visitors of the beach has significantly reduced due to the bad weather recently, as well as the huge pile of garbage on the beach that is making people feel uncomfortable.” he concluded.
The residents hope that the regional government can solve this problem immediately to help the local people in the area.
‘Missing’ rescued dolphins actually died, Bali authorities say
Two dolphins that were rescued from a captive facility in Bali have died after their health deteriorated, the province’s Natural Resources Conservation Center (BKSDA) revealed, following demands for answers from activists who reported the porpoises missing.
Related — Activists say dolphins rescued from captivity in Bali are missing
Sumarsono, who heads a conservation department at BKSDA Bali, told local news outlets yesterday that the dolphins were already sick when they were rescued, having lived under abusive conditions at the Dolphin Lodge.
“We saw that the eyes were a bit yellowish, because they were severely exploited by the old owners. [And then] they were ridden on by Lucinta Luna and friends, among other things,” Sumarsono said.
A coalition advocating for dolphin welfare yesterday called on Indonesian officials to explain the missing dolphins, after the group’s representative found that there were only five out of the seven rescued dolphins at their temporary home at Bali Exotic Marine Park.
Sumarsono also quickly dismissed circulating rumors that authorities had gone on to sell the dolphins or cooked them for consumption. The two dolphins that died, he added, were lacking in nutrition and had never undergone a medical examination.
“There was never a medical check-up. They didn’t have an appropriate medical record, so when we seized them several were sick but they looked healthy,” Sumarsono said, without revealing specific details about the mammals’ cause of death.
Indonesian officials took their time to close down the Dolphin Lodge, even when the dolphin attraction facility has long been accused of animal exploitation and despite official orders to shut operations last year. Evidently, it took a viral video featuring dangdut singer Lucinta Luna swimming with a dolphin for authorities to actually enforce the law.
That led to the rescue of seven bottlenose dolphins, which are of the Indo-Pacific species. The Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins are a protected species in Indonesia, and they are listed as “near threatened” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Authorities previously said the dolphins were healthy and being closely supervised, though animal welfare organizations have raised concerns over its current placement at the Bali Exotic Marine Park, which some activists describe as a “commercial captivity center.”
Sumarsono emphasized that the dolphins had been under medical treatment and supervision to prevent the worst outcome.
“But what can we do, when they had already been sick since we rescued them?” he said.
Bali Police Hand Out Food Packages To Vaccinated Locals
The Badung Police Department handed out food packages to vaccinated citizens at Mengwi Bus Station on Wednesday (24/11).
During a Zebra Agung Operation that was conducted to assure the safety of Badung road traffic at Mengwi Bus Station on Wednesday morning, the Head of Badung Traffic Officer, AKP Aan Saputra confirmed that officers also handed out free food packages for residents who had participated in the vaccination program.
“We have educated the importance of prevention protocol to the people who were queueing for Covid-19 vaccine at the location,” AKP Saputra said.
“We handed out free face masks and food packages for them.”
This program was initiated as a form of support from the police department to the people who were affected by the pandemic.
Additionally, Saputra explained that the Zebra Agung Operation was instructed by the Head of Police Department to reduce the number of violation traffic violations, especially during the upcoming year-end holiday.
“This operation was conducted to minimize the potential traffic accidents that are caused by the people who violate our traffic rules during the peak season of our tourism.” AKP Saputra concluded.