Jokowi urges officials to ramp up cash-funded labor intensive programs

Jokowi urges officials to ramp up cash-funded labor intensive programs

President Joko Widodo called for more cash-funded labor-intensive programs. (ANTARA/HO-Presidential Palace Press Bureau)

Activities in the provinces, districts, and cities should be geared towards labor-intensive programs that are financed in cash to maintain the people's purchasing power
Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has urged officials in the regions to add more labor-intensive programs, financed in cash, to maintain the people's purchasing power while simultaneously being heedful of health protocols amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Activities in the provinces, districts, and cities should be geared towards labor-intensive programs that are financed in cash to maintain the people's purchasing power," President Jokowi stated at the Merdeka Palace in Jakarta, Tuesday, during a limited meeting via videoconferencing on the President's Briefing to Governors in Handling the COVID-19 Pandemic.

However, he also highlighted the significance of adhering to strict health protocols in implementing programs to thwart the spread of COVID-19.

Furthermore, the president underlined the need for measures to handle COVID-19 being unanimous, both at the provincial government and national level.

"Everyone should apply the same policies and I call for all policies in the provinces to be calculated, in terms of their impact on the health and safety of the people as well as the socio-economic impact," he emphasized.

Jokowi cited as an example, that if a province, district, or city government was looking to close down schools, offices, and places where economic transactions took place, such as markets, then the social, economic and health impacts should be thoroughly computed.

"If you are keen to implement the policy, then preparations should be made. If a city (government) is intent on doing it, then calculate how many people would become unemployed and compute how many street vendors, pedicabs, and drivers will go out of work. Support should be provided for those sectors," he explained.

In other words, social assistance must be offered to them along with a social safety net that would further support the policy.

"Our focus is on the three aspects of safety and health being our main one, but prepare the second one that is a social safety net, and social assistance should also be prepared," he remarked.

The third aspect is the economic impact that must be meticulously computed to ensure the availability of food stocks. Related news: Physical distancing is better alternative to lockdown: President

Related news: Jokowi to announce steps to mitigate economic impact of COVID-19


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