Mon, 10 Jan 2000

Large influx of newcomers expected

JAKARTA (JP): About 200,000 newcomers are expected to enter the capital along with millions of residents returning home after the Idul Fitri holiday, head of the City Population Agency Sjahrin Lumban Toruan said on Sunday.

"Last year some 2.6 million local residents left the capital for the Idul Fitri holiday. About 2.8 million entered the capital following last year's holiday ... our estimate is about 200,000 (newcomers)," Sjahrin told reporters.

Sjahrin earlier said the number of newcomers entering the capital after the 1998 Idul Fitri holiday totaled some 350,000 people.

"Those who enter Jakarta without official documents will be sanctioned according to city bylaw No. 1/1996, which means either a three-month imprisonment or a fine of Rp 50,000 (US$7)," Sjahrin said.

Governor Sutiyoso has repeatedly reminded residents returning to the capital not to bring friends or relatives unless they have skills to offer employers.

"If newcomers do not have adequate skills, they will have almost no hope of finding work in Jakarta. Additional residents in Jakarta will cram the already packed slum areas," Sutiyoso once said.

Gubernatorial Decree No. 160/1998 on guidelines to registration states that individuals intending to reside in the capital should meet certain prerequisites and conditions, city official Tursandi said.

"The requirements include providing documents stating that they have moved from their hometowns, letters guaranteeing a place to reside in the city and work papers," Tursandi explained. (ylt)