Ministry drafts ‘umrah’ regulations as Saudi Arabia plans to reopen to pilgrimsMonday, 26 Oct 2020
GENERAL NEWS AND HEADLINES
Ministry drafts ‘umrah’ regulations as Saudi Arabia plans to reopen to pilgrims
CNN Indonesia (https://tinyurl.com/y6q72hnn)
The Religious Affairs Ministry is currently preparing a regulation for Indonesians going on umrah (minor haj) to Saudi Arabia, said Oman Fathurahan, the ministry’s acting director general of haj and umrah.
The regulation, Oman explained, would include provisions related to COVID-19-free requirements for pilgrims, health protocols as well as quarantine. Oman said that such a regulation would be included in the draft religious affairs ministerial decree, which would be prepared should Indonesia be allowed to send umrah pilgrims to Saudi Arabia.
Previously, Saudi Arabia had allowed pilgrims residing inside the country to go on the pilgrimage starting Oct. 4, following a seven-month pause due to coronavirus concerns. The Middle Eastern country is planning to allow visitors from specific countries deemed safe starting Nov. 1. The country, however, has yet to announce its decision.
Civil liberties in the world's third-largest democracy are in jeopardy, according to the latest study by pollster Indikator Politik Indonesia, amid public concerns over the government’s authoritarian posturing in response to criticism over its policymaking methods in recent months.
The survey, conducted between Sept. 24 and 30 and involving 1,200 people across the country, shows that the majority of respondents, at 79.6 percent, said they felt more afraid to publicly voice their opinions on current issues.
Similarly, 73.8 percent of respondents found it more difficult to hold public rallies and demonstrations, while 57.7 percent believed authorities had used excessive force against people who held political views that diverged from the status quo.
Court rejects judicial review request on regional elections Perppu
The Constitutional Court has rejected a petition for a judicial review of Regulation in Lieu of Law (Perppu) No. 1/2020 on this year’s simultaneous regional elections, stating that the plaintiff, which is the Union of Surakarta People for the Elections (PWSPP), did not have a legal standing to file such a petition.
In the petition, the group challenged Article 201A of the Perppu, which states that regional elections are to be postponed until December 2020. The group argued that the decision to hold the elections in December would increase the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
BUSINESS AND ECONOMICS NEWS AND HEADLINES
Preemployment card management spokesperson Louisa Tuhatu said the government has annulled 373,745 participants from the program. Louisa explained that the backlisted participants did not buy any training packages 30 days after the government approved their participation. Following the annulment, the government has recovered Rp 1.32 trillion (US$89.9 million) of the incentive fund.
State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) Minister Erick Thohir has appointed Eko Sulistyo as a commissioner of state-owned electricity company PLN. Previously, Eko served as political communication deputy at the Presidential Staff Office (KSP) from 2014 to 2019. On October 8, Erick appointed Ulin Ni’am Yusron, a member of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s 2019 re-election team as a commissioner of the Indonesian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC).
Antam to increase stakes at Weda Bay Nickel
CNBC Indonesia (https://tinyurl.com/y4535byb)
State-owned metal miner PT Aneka Tambang (Antam) plans to increase its stake in mining firm PT Weda Bay Nickel to 40 percent, from currently 10 percent. The acquisition is reportedly worth US$300 million. Currently, 90 percent of Weda Bay Nickel’s shares are held by French mining group Eramet SA and China’s Tsingshan holding group. Bloomberg reported that Antam had contacted an investment bank to assess the potential of Weda Bay Nickel’s shares acquisition from Tsingshan. Antam spokesperson Kunto Hendraprawoko said it was the company’s policy to obtain greater value-added by expanding its business into the downstream mineral processing sector.
United States multinational technology company Google and Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holding have agreed to inject US$350 million in capital into Indonesian e-commerce platform Tokopedia. The amount of the capital injection is below the initial goal of within the range of $500 million to $1 billion, as reported by Bloomberg in July. To meet the shortfall, Tokopedia is reportedly looking for other investors.Download PDF