Tapin, S Kalimantan (ANTARA News) - Social Affairs Minister Khofifah Indar Parawansa hoped Indonesia would follow Swedens way in its efforts to cut the rates of prostitution and its clients.

"Sweden can reduce the countrys prostitution rate and its clients by 75 percent and 80 percent respectively in three years," the minister said here on Sunday.

The minister was on a working visit to Tapin, South Kalimantan, to attend the 69th anniversary of Muslimat NU and the Muslimat NU conference 2015.

The Muslimat NU is the womens organization wing of the countrys largest Muslim organization Nahdlatul Ulama (NU).

Minister Parawansa said that the handling of prostitution case in Sweden should become an example of handling prostitution in the country.

She said that the decline in the prostitution in Sweden was because that country imposed a heavy punishment on people who were involved in prostitution service.

"Lets pray so that prostitution problem in Indonesia could be solved. If Sweden can do that why we cannot," she stressed.

Indonesia which has the Pancasila state ideology should also be able to preserve the nations morality because the principles of the Pacasila state philosophy contain highly valuable morality, she said.

She said that Indonesia was facing not only morality decadence but also decriminalization where prostitution was not considered as a crime.

While in fact, according to the social affairs minister, prostitution contained slavery, criminalization, exploitation and human trafficking.

Minister Parawansa said on Thursday she opposed the Jakarta administrations plan to provide certification to sex workers in the capital city.

"Within the system of prostitution, there is slavery. With or without certification, you can find exploitation, criminalization, human and even children trafficking there," Parawansa pointed out.

The ministry also opposes the plan to legalize prostitution through localization.

Prostitution is a serious crime, she stated, adding that legalizing it would mean supporting slavery.

"If we agree with the localization of prostitution, it would mean we were justifying slavery itself," she remarked.

Current lifestyle has altered the way people carry out the business of prostitution. Now, there are numerous websites on prostitution on the Internet, which is a matter of concern.

Earlier, Governor of Jakarta Basuki Tjahaya Purnama, or Ahok as he is better known, recommended that the city administration legalize prostitution in certain areas.

The governor noted that making prostitution legal in certain areas would provide an alternative solution for it.

"Legalizing a prostitution site would be a solution because no matter how hard we try, we will never be able to eradicate prostitution. It will always exist, as long as humans exist," he said.

Ahok suggested that the administration provide an area or building as a prostitution site. Following this, sex workers can be given professional certification that would be useful for gathering data and for periodic health checkups.

Moreover, the governor mentioned the administrative policy to close a red-light district in Jakarta in previous years, such as the Kramat Tunggak brothel in West Jakarta.

However, prostitution in the area did not stop. The sex workers moved to another area, he revealed.

In addition, the National Police (Polri) will cooperate with the Ministry of Communication and Information to block websites that offer prostitution-related services.

With regard to clandestine prostitution being carried out in places of entertainment, and lodging and boarding houses, Polri has urged better cooperation from the public to report such acts to the agency.

The police is also intensifying operations in various places to reduce the number of prostitution-related cases.

Online prostitution has now come under the radar following the murder of Deudeuh Alfisahrin.

Alfisahrin alias Tata was found dead in a rented room in North Tebet Road, South Jakarta, on Saturday, April 11.

Her naked body was recovered, with socks gagged in her mouth and wires around her neck.

The suspected killer is believed to have been a client of the deceased.


Editor: Jafar M Sidik
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