"Our recent rapid and swab test results came negative for the presence of COVID-19," the Bawaslu-Papua Office's commissioner, Ronald Manoach, informed ANTARA in Jayapura, the capital of Papua Province, on Sunday evening.
The agency's commissioners and supervisors at the sub-district and village levels from all Bawaslu district offices across Papua had also undergone rapid and swab tests for COVID-19 for which negative results were received, he stated.
In safeguarding Bawaslu commissioners, workers, and properties from COVID-19, they continue to practice preventive measures as mandated in the government's health protocols while working inside office buildings and venturing outdoors, he noted.
"In ensuring that all stages of this year's simultaneous regional elections run smoothly and securely, Bawaslu is forging collaboration with related authorities, including hospitals," he remarked.
Currently, the General Elections Commission (KPU) and Bawaslu offices in nine provinces, 224 districts, and 37 cities are engaged in preparing for all stages of the regional elections to be organized simultaneously on December 9, 2020.
In Papua Province, eligible Papuan voters from the districts of Waropen, Supiori, Merauke, Yalimo, Boven Digul, Asmat, Mamberamo Raya, Nabire, Keerom, Pegunungan Bintang, and Yahukimo will exercise their democratic right to vote.
Ahead of the regional election, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has highlighted the importance of applying strict COVID-19 prevention health protocols during every stage of the polls, as public health remains an unwavering priority.
According to the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI), several violations of health protocols occurred during the registration process for candidates contesting this year's regional elections, held on September 4-6.
Violations were committed in cities and districts, such as Medan in North Sumatra, Solo in Central Java, Karawang District in West Java, and Surabaya in East Java, where people had gathered in motorcades to demonstrate their support for candidates.
For this year's regional elections, President Jokowi has instructed Home Minister Tito Karnavian and National Police Chief Gen. Idham Azis to take stringent action to thwart the spread of COVID-19.
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