REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA - President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) has stated that the health and security services provided to Eid al Fitr travellers should not be considered routine only because circumstances during the exodus period change every year. "The Lebaran holiday exodus takes place every year and we have the experience to provide security for travellers, but we should not consider it as merely a routine activity," he said during a cabinet meeting at his office on Monday.
"Circumstances during the event change every year, so we cannot make these services regular," The President added. "New problems can arise, for example, an increasing number of travellers use motorcycles and we need to focus on them to ensure their safety," he explained.
During his meeting with the coordinating ministers, the head of state discussed security, road infrastructure, fuel supply and health services facilities available for holiday travellers. Earlier, the Ministry of Health announced that it had set up 1,468 health service posts and deployed at least 65,000 paramedics to assist homeward-bound travellers during Eid al Fitr.
Health Minister Nafsiah Mboi said in the statement that her ministry had set up health-care posts to protect travellers from sickness, incapacitation, death and other accident-related risks during their journey. "Besides the risk of accident, travellers also face the risks of food poisoning, diarrhoea, acute respiratory infection and communicable diseases, among other things," she added.
Mboi stated that all health-care centres would be located along the routes used by Eid al Fitr travellers and would remain open 24 hours a day. The ministry also distributed 200 packages of medicines among the health-care posts situated along national highways, as well as near the departure and arrival gates of seaports.
It also set up an information service centre, through the Rapid Response and Health Post (PTRC), with direct access to the Police's National Traffic Management Centre (NTMC).