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Jakarta plans to buy helicopter to evacuate people living in islands

Jakarta, EkuatorialDKI Jakarta Governor, Basuki ‘Ahok’ Tjahaja Purnama, on Thursday (12/2) said that they were planning on proposing a budget to buy a helicopter intended to evacuate people living in outer islands of the province.

“If there’s money and approved by Jakarta’s house of parliament, we want to buy helicopters that would be used to evacuate or anticipate certain cases. Its runway [would be built] in Panjang Island by private sector and it will be operated by Indonesia Air Force [TNI AU],” said Ahok responding to question on efforts to evacuate people living in Jakarta’s coastal area, such as Thousands Islands from recent bad weather.

Other ways to protect people living in coastal areas in northern Jakarta, he said were to elevate coastal dike, build dams and water pumps.

Head of DKI Jakarta’s Water Management Agency, Agus Priyono Jendro, said the government had allocated Rp 1.6 trillion (US$ 125 million) to elevate the four kilometers coastal dike which will begin in 2015. Coastal dikes to be elevated, he said, were located in Kamal, Tanjungan, Kali Asin, Luar Batang, RE Martadinata, Cilincing and Marunda. Meanwhile, coastal dike in Ancol area would be built by PT Pembangunan Jaya Ancol.

Furthermore, Jendro said that they would also built six big water pumps in Kamal, Angle, Marina, Karang, Sentiong and Sunter Hilir, which would take two or three years development.

“[We hope] that tidal floods in Jakarta’s coastal areas will be resolved through those pumps because 40 percent of norther part of Jakarta is low land,” he said adding the province has a total of 555 pumps, — 149 pumps in West Jakarta, 120 pumps in Central Jakarta, 113 pumps in South Jakarta, 56 pumps in East Jakarta, and 117 pumps in North Jakarta –, which were relied upon to channel the water to rivers or the sea.

Meanwhile, Ahok said that the government had dispatched medical assistance to help residents of Thousands Islands district who were isolated due to bad weather. “We have sent enough medical personnel there. Doctors must be resident at least for two years,” he said.

He added that those doctors would tend to people gotten sick during rainy season without have to go out of the island and risked dealing with high waves. Yurika Diandra

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