REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, MATARAM -- Consul General of the People's Republic of China Gou Haodong and entourage of the Chinese Consulate in Denpasar visited several earthquake victims in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, Monday. They were accompanied by NU Care officials.
"We have come to review the location of earthquake victims in Lombok to better know the conditions and also what is needed," Haodong stated.
Prior to the field visit, Haodong also distributed symbolic donations at the NU Peduli Command Post at the NU NTB University in Mataram City. He revealed that since the earthquake hit Lombok, the Chinese government had provided logistical assistance and emergency response through various distribution models.
"In addition to the G-to-G assistance, the private sector and Chinese community were also called to channel aid to the victims of the Lombok earthquake, one of them being through the NU Peduli post," he explained.
According to Haodong, after the field visit, an evaluation of the aid and donations will be conducted later. "We will evaluate what the needs of the earthquake victims are now, so that assistance can be more appropriate in accordance with what is needed," he noted.
On the occasion, Chinese car company Sokon (DongFeng Sokon) provided assistance to an operational car unit for NU Peduli. Haodong affirmed that the Chinese government and people were highly concerned about the earthquake victims in Lombok, NTB.
Before the earthquake in Lombok, a major quake had claimed casualties in China in 2008. "In 2008, the earthquake had claimed 80 thousand lives. Hence, when an earthquake hit Indonesia, Lombok, we could also sense how the victims felt. This is what makes our community care and try to help as best as we can," he explained.
He explained that during the post-disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction period, he had planned to invite delegates from the NU Mataram University and NU Care to visit Sichuan Province, China. "Sichuan Province was the worst-affected area of the 2008 earthquake in China. However, it only took three years for the region to be rebuilt," Haodong stated.
He believes that the Indonesian and Chinese communities shared several similarities, in terms of forging mutual cooperation and togetherness. "We hope the delegation would be able to see and learn directly at Sinchuan to then apply it in Lombok," he stated.
Head of the NU Care Team Baiq Mulianah remarked that assistance from China had so far been channeled by NU Peduli to several earthquake victims located in North Lombok, East Lombok, and West Lombok.
"We have divided this assistance approach into six clusters, ranging from logistics to handling refugees, health, and education, to the trauma healing stage," he noted.
Apart from the community, assistance was also received from five companies in China, including from Bank of China. "We have distributed donations and assistance from the government and private sector in China, and today there is also a symbolic donation aid," he remarked.
He revealed that the total aid distributed reached some Rp500 million. "However, overall, it could be more due to logistical assistance, such as food, tarpaulin, and the needs of children and women," Mulianah added.