Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Coordinating Ministry for Human Development and Culture stated that the social assistance rice packages buried in the field in the Sukmajaya area, Depok City, West Java Province, contained damaged rice unfit for consumption.

Deputy for the Coordination of Social Welfare Improvement at the Ministry, Andie Megantara, stated that the Targeted Aid and Subsidy Team, on Monday, August 1, had visited the place where the aid rice was buried in Depok City to investigate the cause.

"Based on the result of investigation between our ministry and the Depok City Police and JNE transporter, it was found that the rice was not fit for consumption when it was stockpiled because it was damaged during delivery to the beneficiary families (KPM)," Megantara noted in a press statement received here, Tuesday.

According to the investigation, it was identified that the buried rice packages weighed around one ton from the Presidential Special Assistance (Banpres) rice in 2020, he added.

"The rice packages were distributed by the State Logistics Agency (Bulog) through the JNE transporter in 20-kilogram and five-kilogram packages," Megantara remarked.

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In 2020, the Indonesian government had distributed Presidential Assistance in the form of rice to 1.9 million beneficiary families in the Jakarta-Bogor-Depok-Tangerang-Bekasi area. In this case, every family affected by the COVID-19 pandemic received 25 kilograms of rice, he stated.

"The rice found (buried in Depok) was predicted to have come from the distribution of Banpres Phases 2 and 4 of 2020," Megantara stated.

Moreover, JNE transporter has replaced the damaged rice with new rice of the same quality as the previous rice to be distributed to KPM. Meanwhile, rice unfit for distribution was being stockpiled or buried, he revealed.

He said the Coordinating Ministry for Human Development and Culture will oversee the handling of the social assistance rice case in Depok City to completion.

"Until now, the ministry continues to coordinate between the Depok Metro Police and the Ministry of Social Affairs and JNE transporter," he concluded.

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Translator: Wuryanti Puspitasari, Resinta
Editor: Suharto
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