Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo has asked the Jakarta administration to speed up COVID-19 vaccinations amid a surge in cases, chief of the Jakarta Provincial Legislative Assembly (DPRD), Prasetyo Edi Marsudi, said.

The vaccination program in ports and densely populated areas must be expedited, Marsudi told the press at the Presidential Palace here on Tuesday.

President Widodo on Tuesday summoned the Jakarta Regional Leadership Communication Forum (Forkopimda) and issued directives on ways to deal with a recent spike in COVID-19 cases.

Besides DPRD chief Marsudi, the forum comprised Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan, Commander of the Jakarta Regional Military Command, Major General Mulyo Aji, chief of the Jakarta Metropolitan Police, Inspector General Fadil Imran, and mayors and resort police chiefs from across Jakarta.

The President noted that COVID-19 cases in Jakarta have increased sharply, with one of the causes being the entry of a new variant from India.

"The President has asked us as the regional apparatuses to curb (COVID-19 transmission)," Marsudi said.

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The President has also asked Forkopimda members to make field visits to aid greater public compliance with health protocols, he added.

Governor Baswedan had earlier attributed the spike in coronavirus infections in the capital to the Eid al-Fitr holidays.

Jakarta should accord greater attention to the sharp jump in COVID-19 cases in the past week, he said during a roll call held on Sunday night to remind agencies of their obligation to stem the spread of COVID-19.

There has been a 50-percent increase in infections in the capital city, with the number of cases climbing to 17,400 on June 11, 2021 from 11,500 on June 6, 2021, he observed.

The COVID-19 positivity rate also increased to 17 percent on Sunday from 9 percent a week earlier.

"The number of new cases increased in each of the past four days by 2,000, 2,300, 2,400, and 2,700 today," Baswedan noted.

The number of specimens tested at laboratories also increased eight-fold as against a four-fold increase prescribed by the WHO.

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Translator: Indra Arief P/Suharto
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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