Flooded with news
Yep, it's all over the UK media, or in a rag called Metro
- which, I am informed, is a free morning newspaper and "probably the most read paper in London". Metro reports that on Tuesday and Wednesday next, June 3rd/4th, flooding in Jakarta "will exceed last November's roof-high levels in the hardest-hit areas."
Now, I don't want to say "I told you so", but I did
, on November 28th last year.
It is, of course, encouraging that City Hall is using sandbags to raise the sea walls to a height of 2.5 metres in anticipation of a tidal swell of 2.2 metres. Let’s hope that there isn’t a storm or some other unforeseen circumstance which will render these belated efforts worthless, but are City Hall merely responding to a reminder from the World Bank?
I only ask this because City Hall apparently only started these works yesterday, having thought about them for a week. Permanent repairs, using stone and raising the walls to a height of 3 metres will have to wait until the end of a "tender procedure".
Public Works Agency head, Wisnu, is quoted in the Post as saying, "We hope to pick the winner in June or July so the construction can be finished by December.
Thanks Wisnu for reminding us that privatisation of public services is a waste of time, money and resources. The welfare of millions of Jakarta residents and visitors is being put at risk because tax payers' money is being spent on non-essential bureaucratic and, based on past admittances, probably corrupt practices.
Doesn't Jakarta's Public Works Agency have the competent staff and equipment to handle its own public works?
Whoops, that's a stupid question, as anyone who's been anywhere on Jakarta's roads over the past year or so will know.
Another worry is that I can find no mention in the local media of what preparations are being made by Jakarta's mayoralties to provide emergency accommodation and welfare services to the next batch of Indonesia's refugees.
But, hey, I'm all right because I live on a rise in south Jakarta and far from the sea.