Jakarta (ANTARA) - The National Human Rights Commission (Komnas HAM) pointed to a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in several Indonesian regions during the 2020 simultaneous regional head elections (Pilkada) campaign activities.

Based on existing data, 266,845 confirmed cases of COVID-19 were recorded as of Sept 25, while during the campaign period, the figure rose to 502,110 as of Nov 23, Hairansyah, the Komnas HAM commissioner, noted in a statement here on Monday.

At a coordination meeting with the General Election Supervisory Board (Bawaslu), attention was drawn to several violations of health protocols during the campaign period despite issued written warnings, administrative sanctions, and attempts to dissolve the campaign, he emphasized.

Hence, 15 days before the voting day, Komnas HAM has recommended that supervision be intensified and that a disciplinary task force ensure that elections officers and voters are stringent in implementing health protocols diligently.

"This is because health protocols during the election campaign stages have not yet been implemented optimally. There is still negligence in following health protocols that can potentially lead to the spread of COVID-19," Hairansyah noted.

Komnas HAM also emphasized the need to maximize preventive efforts against the spread of the COVID-19 during congregations in campaign activities.

The human rights body urged the National General Elections Commission (KPU) to coordinate intensively with regional task forces and the health service, as well as outline emergency steps as a precautionary measure against the spread of COVID-19.

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Translator: Dyah Dwi Astuti, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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