Following a viral video reportedly showing people being intimidated for their political views during Car Free Day in Central Jakarta on Sunday, the Jakarta administration is mulling over deploying security personnel to safeguard the weekly activity and ensure it is politics-free.
“We’ll communicate with the police to place security personnel. Members of the public should also get involved to remind [other people],” Deputy Jakarta Governor Sandiaga Uno said on Monday as quoted by tribunnews.com.
He said the move was aimed to uphold a prevailing regulation that prohibited any politically motivated activities during the weekly event.
Former Jakarta governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama issued a gubernatorial regulation that restricted political activities in Car Free Day zones.
In a video widely circulated online, people wearing T-shirts emblazoned with the text #DiaSibukKerja (#HeIsBusyWorking), as a show of support for President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, who will seek reelection next year, were reportedly intimidated during what was supposed to be a politics-free event at the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta on Sunday.
The suspected intimidators, who reportedly wore T-shirts with #2019GantiPresident (#2019ChangethePresident) printed on them, were seen mocking the Jokowi supporters, accusing them of having been paid to wear the shirts.
Among the alleged victims was a crying child, whose mother stood up to the suspected intimidators.
Police have opened an investigation into the case.