1000s flee Jakarta floods

2014-01-20 13:12
Residents wade through a flooded neighbourhood in Jakarta. More than 30 000 Indonesians have fled their homes in the capital due to flooding. (File, AFP)

Residents wade through a flooded neighbourhood in Jakarta. More than 30 000 Indonesians have fled their homes in the capital due to flooding. (File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Jakarta - Monsoon rains have inundated parts of the Indonesian capital, forcing more than 30 000 people to evacuate and posing a challenge for its wildly popular governor, Joko Widodo, a possible presidential candidate.

Soldiers were deployed to help nearly 50 000 residents in the sprawling city of 10 million people, as floodwaters reached three meters in some districts, the national disaster mitigation agency said.

Last year's rainy season brought Jakarta to a standstill, causing a river in the city to breach its banks and swamp the central business district, leaving thousands stranded and causing $580m in damage to property and companies.

Heavy rains are forecast this week, potentially worsening floods which have killed seven people, mostly from electrocution, and forced thousands to seek refuge at temporary shelters, including schools and mosques.

Jokowi, as the governor is known locally, came to office in late 2012 with promises to improve the city's creaky infrastructure, strained by chronic floods and traffic.

The presidential favourite has since launched a number of initiatives to alleviate flooding, including clearing riverbanks of illegal housing and rubbish, and creating more green spaces and drainage to absorb rainwater.

But until those efforts show results, he could face criticism over flood management, especially if the waters rise and more districts are affected. The floods have already caused about $80m in damage, said the disaster mitigation agency.

"Last year we started clearing the riverbanks and dredging the canals to allow water to flow more smoothly, but it's a slow process and the results will only show in five or 10 years", said Eko Hariadi, spokesperson for the city administration.

Immense popular support has put Jokowi far ahead of rivals such as former general Prabowo Subianto and tycoon Aburizal Bakrie in opinion polls. But Jokowi has not declared his candidacy, nor has the party he is affiliated with, the opposition PDI-P, said whether it will back him. That decision rests with former president and party leader Megawati Sukarnoputri, daughter of the country's founding ruler.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    indonesia  |  floods

Beirut protest turns violent

2015-10-08 22:24

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

De Allende's star burns bright
Boks were 'in a dark space'
Pacific island teams singled out for rough tactics?
Ireland favourites but France bullish
Traffic Alerts

It is always easier to notice the faults in others rather than face our own. Focusing too much on the perfect and ideal scenario...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.