March 11, 2020 / 3:47 AM / 5 months ago

Indonesia delays Formula E race due to coronavirus concerns

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia’s capital city will delay a Formula E race scheduled for June 6 due to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus, state news agency Antara reported, citing a letter by Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan.

Jakarta was originally scheduled as the 10th round of the championship. Races in Rome and China’s Sanya have also been postponed over concerns about the virus.

Indonesia has confirmed 27 people have been infected with the virus, with some being treated for COVID-19 in Jakarta, but authorities have refused to provide details on where cases were discovered to prevent panic.

“Concerning the development of COVID-19 in many parts of the world and especially in Jakarta, the Formula E that had been scheduled for June 2020 will be postponed,” Antara cited the letter that the governor wrote to the local organising committee as saying.

The Jakarta race had already faced controversy, with the central government initially ruling out a proposed temporary track around the capital’s National Monument, though it eventually gave its permission.

Governor Baswedan has also faced criticism for spending 1.6 trillion rupiah ($111.77 million) to prepare Jakarta for the all-electric race, instead of using the funds to mitigate floods that have hit the city particularly hard this year.

Reporting by Gayatri Suroyo; Editing by Ed Davies/Peter Rutherford

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