Jakarta. Hundreds of people who have left the capital for the annual Idul Fitri exodus may return to Jakarta in a week to find their homes and businesses gone.
Basuki Tjahaja Purnama has a long term goal to rehouse people living in unzoned land, particularly on the banks of the city’s fetid rivers, because such settlements exacerbate flooding in the capital and are a health risk for those living there.
“During the Idul Fitri season, many people will leave to their hometown. We will dismantle all of them,” Basuki said on Friday.
He said the government would take down houses and remove street vendors located on river sides, dams, along railway tracks and under bridges — adding that the city government needed to conduct the operation during Idul Fitri to prevent clashes and protest from the inhabitants.
“To clean the street vendors under the toll road, we [Jakarta public order agency] will be assisted by the military in Jakarta and the transportation ministry. For the street vendors along the railway tracks, we will be supported by Kereta Api Indonesia,” he said, referring to the state-owned rail company.
The plan for the cleared land is for it to be turned over to the commons. Basuki said all areas of Jakarta would be affected, and that local mayors in the city were ready. He would not be drawn on any specific locations.
“It is still secret,” he said. “If I tell you, then it will be leaked [to the residents].” JG