Mon, 08 Aug 1994

Haj hospital finished soon

JAKARTA (JP): Minister of Health, Sujudi, said late last week that the construction of Jakarta Haj Hospital in Pondok Gede, East Jakarta, will be completed by early November.

"When it begins operation in November the hospital is expected to employ 200 highly qualified doctors," Sujudi said during his inspection of the hospital, which is located inside the haj dormitory complex in Pondok Gede.

During the visit the minister was accompanied by Governor Surjadi Soedirdja, East Jakarta Mayor Sudarsono and some officials from the religious affairs ministry.

The 375-bed hospital, named "Syuhada Mina" or Martyrs of Mina, was built in the memory of the 700 Indonesian pilgrims killed in a stampede inside the Al-Muaisim tunnel in Mina, Saudi Arabia, in 1990.

The government also built three other haj hospitals in Surabaya, East Java, Ujungpandang in South Sulawesi, Medan in North Sumatra. They are also named Syuhada Mina.

Former minister of religious affairs Munawir Syadzali said earlier that the hospital will be used by haj pilgrims during the haj season, while the rest of the time it will be used by the general public.

The 14,000 square-meter hospital is built on one hectare of land.

Soenarjudardji, an assistant to the secretary of the city administration, said that the hospital is built at a cost of Rp 23 billion (US$10.6 million) but thus far the committee had been only able to acquire Rp 10.1 billion.

To deal with the financial shortage, Soenarjudardji said, the committee had tried to raise more funds from various sources such as city administration, businessmen, the 1995 to 1997 haj pilgrims and a loan from Bank DKI, a city owned bank.

President Soeharto, in his capacity as chairman of the Amal Bakti Muslim Pancasila Foundation, has donated Rp 2 billion for the hospital construction while the Saudi government has donated US$3.6 million.

Soenarjudardji also said that the construction of the hospital is behind schedule because 85 percent of it should have been done by now, "But only 82 percent has been completed," he said.

He said that the construction was disrupted by the traffic problem in the area during the haj season in the last February to May period.

The construction is being done by PT Jaya Konstruksi Manggala Pratama, a private construction company.(03)