Solidarity with the Indonesian People

02 October 2018 07:22

Photo: Kristianto Purnomo, KOMPAS.COM

An earthquake of magnitude strength 7.7 has shaken an island of Indonesia again on 28 September 2018 at 17.02 pm. Later, the Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BMKG) updates the strength to a magnitude of 7.4 that hit the territory of Palu and Donggala, Central Sulawesi. The earthquake was followed by tsunami that struck Talise beach in Palu City and the beach in Donggala. 

Until Monday, 1 October 2018 the death toll has reached 832, but the number is expected to rise due to many collapsed buildings that have yet to be searched and other villages that have not been reached. Grave difficulties to search for the survivors and bodies are due to lack of heavy equipment, forcing the rescue teams to dig and search by hand. Many houses, hotels, and hospitals have collapsed, other buildings are badly damaged and many have been swept away by the tsunami. Power was shut down due to the broken electricity supply, which in effect has shut down the communication system, causing families and relatives living outside Palu unable to contact their beloved ones. 

Currently, survivors are struggling to find basic amenities such as food and fuel. Public kitchens are not many to be found. Central Sulawesi administration has declared a 14-day state of emergency, to enable both the regional and national government to mobilise personnel, logistics, equipment as well as money to fulfill the needs of the affected area and people.

This tragedy happened when the earthquake struck Lombok on 9 July 2018 with a magnitude of 6.4, followed by a series of aftershocks. Many village communities are still in need of basic amenities provision. The earthquake with epicenters north of Rinjani Volcano has taken death toll of around 560 and destroyed more than 73,000 houses, with many survivors still living in evacuation camps.

Ambet Yuson, General Secretary of BWI expressed deepest and most heartfelt sympathy and solidarity to the Indonesian people, survivors, and the families of victims of the earthquake and tsunami catastrophe which took place in Sulawesi island. 

He stated, “At this very difficult time, we would like to extend our support and solidarity to our affiliates, their families and relatives in Indonesia. The recent earthquake and tsunami that took place in Sulawesi island has taken hundreds of lives and caused so much damage to buildings and facilities along the beautiful coastal towns in Central Sulawesi. We will work with our affiliates in Indonesia to provide much-needed immediate support.”