Lenny Tristia Tambun
Indonesia’s annual mass migration gained a little more mass this year as an extra 500,000 Jakarta residents left the city on mudik, the Jakarta population agency said on Tuesday.
According to data released by the Jakarta Population and Civil Registry Agency, some 5,653,487 people left the capital for their hometowns ahead of this year’s Idul Fitri celebrations. Last year, 5,116,368 Jakarta residents participated in the mass exodus.
“To gather data on the people who join in on the annual exodus, we cooperate with the [Jakarta] Transportation Agency and Central Statistical Bureau,” Purba Hutapea, head of Jakarta Population and Civil Registry Agency, said on Tuesday. “Our data shows that the number of people who went to their hometowns increased over last year.”
Jakarta residents who stayed home for the holiday may now be enjoying the ease of driving on the capital’s typically congested streets, but the city’s population always surges after Idul Fitri, Raimon Masardian, secretary of the Jakarta Population and Civil Registry Agency, warned.
And thousands of newcomers will be among those idling in heavy traffic on Thursday as the exodus reverses tides, Raimon said.
The population agency expects an estimated 46,115 new people will move to Jakarta after the holiday. It’s less than the 59,215 new residents that showed up in 2010, when numbers began to decline, he said.
“I hope they will not bring relatives who have no skills or administrative documents to Jakarta,” Raimon said.
And after the mudik travelers return home, Jakarta will hold another annual tradition: raids targeting unregistered newcomers.
Citizens without an identity card or temporary residence letter will be told to leave the capital 21 days after Idul Fitri. Those who expect to stay in Jakarta longer will need to apply for a temporary residence letter.