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Jakarta pedestrians stand firm

Sunday, April 29, 2012 - 01:29

April 29 - Pedestrians in the Indonesian capital campaign fight to reclaim pavements overrun by cars, motorcycles and street vendors. Paul Chapman reports.

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Jakarta's pedestrians are putting their collective foot down. They say pavements are for people, roads are for traffic, not the other way round. And they're stepping up their campaign to push home their message in the Indonesian capital where motorcycles and street vendors appear to occupy almost every centimetre of crumbling walkway. SOUNDBITE: ACTIVIST AHMAD SAFRUDIN SAYING (Bahasa Indonesia): "We demand that the government does not prioritise road construction, (THIS MAN SAYS) because it will only accommodate private car owners who only account for 14 per cent of road users." Every Friday the protesters pick an area of Jakarta where pavements are overrun by vehicles and vendors. In December the government finally passed a long-awaited land acquisition law to speed up road, port and airport projects. But progress is slow. And some pedestrians say more roads are not the answer. SOUNDBITE: HIKMAWATI, PEDESTRIAN, SAYING (Bahasa Indonesia): "The government must build more parking spaces for vehicles so pedestrians will not be affected." Official figures show Jakarta's 25 million residents have more than 11 million vehicles between them, mostly motorcycles. However much the pedestrians take a stand the number of vehicles is still rising. Paul Chapman, Reuters

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Jakarta pedestrians stand firm

Sunday, April 29, 2012 - 01:29