(I think) it can be used as a hospital, but I have no idea about the State Secretariat's intention.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The decision on the future use of Kemayoran Athletes Village in North Jakarta hinges on the central government as the facility is under the control of the State Secretariat Ministry, the Jakarta acting governor informed.

"We are still discussing (this issue), yet I am ready to adhere to the central government's decisions," Heru Budi Hartono said during a visit to Ragunan Zoo here on Friday.

The Athletes Village is located on land owned by the Ministry of State Secretariat and was constructed by the Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) for the 2018 Asian Games, he explained.

However, the facility can be repurposed in several ways, including a hospital, as the complex served as a COVID-19 emergency hospital during the peak of the pandemic, he added.

"(I think) it can be used as a hospital, but I have no idea about the State Secretariat's intention. The PUPR Ministry constructed the complex, while the land is owned by the State Secretariat; perhaps they have another concept," Hartono said.

Earlier, the chair of Commission D of the Jakarta Legislature (DPRD), Ida Mahmudah, advised the Jakarta authority to take over the management of the Athletes Village as the facility’s use for the operation of a COVID-19 emergency hospital has been scaled down.

"Otherwise, it will be abandoned, and if it emptied for too long, (it will be) haunted by kuntilanak," Mahmudah said during the commission's working meeting on Wednesday (February 1, 2023), while referring to a ghost from local folklore called kuntilanak.

If the proposal is adopted, she suggested that a portion of the Athletes Village be used as a hospital, while the rest be reallocated for residents' accommodation.

"I think the Jakarta authority can process our proposal. Make the upper floors as residents' flats, and we will use the lower floors as a hospital or a children's hospital that we need," the legislator said.

At the same meeting, head of the Jakarta Public Housing and Residential Area Office, Sarjoko, said that while the Athletes Village can be converted into a hospital, his side is less certain about the option of repurposing the complex as a residential complex.

"We are yet to recognize its demand since we are not identifying any need for a residential flat in the locality yet," he explained.

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Translator: Dewa Ketut SW, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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