Thousands caught violating health protocols in Badung regency

File photo of authorities enforcing health protocols in March 2021. Photo: Satpol PP Badung
File photo of authorities enforcing health protocols in March 2021. Photo: Satpol PP Badung

Authorities in Bali’s Badung regency announced that it has recorded over 2,200 people violating health protocols in the last two months, hundreds of whom ⁠— including more than 300 foreign nationals ⁠— were fined IDR100,000 (US$6.94). 

I Gusti Agung Ketut Suryanegara, head of the Public Order agency (Satpol PP) in Badung, said yesterday that the number of violators have been dwindling down, though foreign nationals still make up the majority. 

“Foreign nationals are still dominant [among the mask rule violators] because they do not believe that there’s COVID-19, and according to them mask use is only for those who are infected or sick,” Suryanegara said. 

He explained that a total of 2,240 people were caught violating health protocols between Jan. 11 and March 6, including those who weren’t wearing masks properly and did not obey other health protocols. Of the 411 people in this group who had to pay a fine, 367 of them were foreign nationals, he added, while others were subjected to social sanctions, given guidance or a written warning. 

“Russian citizens are the dominant group of health protocol violators, because there are many of them now. Most of these foreigners have been in Bali since last year, especially those who are working or have an Indonesian spouse,” Suryanegara said. 

Though Indonesians are also among those who have not obeyed the COVID-19 protocols, it may appear that foreign nationals in Bali have been unfairly targeted in terms of health protocol violations; mostly owing to their reputation since the onset of the pandemic. Maskless foreigners are not that hard to spot in Bali, for example, sights that recently sparked discussions on privilege and led to more severe sanctions by the provincial government. 

Read Also ⁠— Foreigners defying health protocols in Bali face IDR1 million fine, possible deportation

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