Jakarta (ANTARA) - Jakarta's development, especially in mass transportation, is on track, former Jakarta governor and National Defence Forces (TNI) lieutenant general (retd.), Sutiyoso, has said.

"It (the development of mass transportation) is a work of continuity from the draft of my administration," he remarked in North Jakarta on Wednesday while observing mass vaccinations organized by the National Democratic (NasDem) Party.

Each governor may face unique difficulties in COVID-19 handling and need to work with his administration to resolve issues through equally unique problem-solving methods, he said.

During his years in office from 1997-2007, Sutiyoso said, he focused on guarding democracy from the threat of post-reformation riots in 1998. Introducing people to the idea of good democracy was one of his main jobs, he added.

"Governor Baswedan's main homework right now is handling the pandemic, there is nothing else more important than that," he noted.

Sutiyoso said that as Jakarta governor, he had initiated efforts to develop mass transportation in the capital through the TransJakarta (Busway).

"When we started developing TransJakarta, we had no investors interested. I had to initiate everything from the beginning since the project was my priority at that time," he informed.

Sutiyoso said he is grateful that successive Jakarta governors have continued to push mass transportation development in the capital city based on his initial design.

"From TransJakarta, now we have MRT and LRT as well," he added.

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However, he admitted several projects were not implemented or were left unfinished while he was in office, as evidenced by the concrete poles of the monorail project that can be seen at Asia Afrika Street.

"Of course, not everything went on track. Some of them had not been completed or left unfinished. However, the current administration has referred to the macro programs and plans that we made earlier," Sutiyoso claimed.

On Wednesday, he observed mass vaccinations at a vaccination center set up by the NasDem Party, which has appointed him a member of its advisory council, in Tanjung Priok.

He, however, avoided answering reporters' questions about Tanjung Priok, saying he had not looked into the latest situation in the area since he rarely left his home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I need to take a closer look at what (Tanjung Priok) looks like right now. I rarely go outside nowadays since I am included in the vulnerable group of people," the 76-year-old remarked.

He said he was grateful that there were many young people in North Jakarta who worked seriously, regardless of which class or party they belonged to, to help the government handle the COVID-19 pandemic by supporting vaccination efforts.

"Vaccination programs are very important," Sutiyoso stressed.

He said he was satisfied with the high level of public interest in participating in the vaccination program initiated by the NasDem Party.

Once the number of vaccine recipients reaches 100 thousand, the NasDem Party must work with related stakeholders to initiate further steps to help stop COVID-19 transmission, the former governor said.

"We cannot leave the job to the government, they need our help, too. I hope all parties and organizations can work together to expedite the vaccination," he remarked.

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Translator: Abdu F, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Suharto
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