Tiring work schedules take a toll on Indonesian election workers: 270 die

Might sound absolutely insane; but, yes, it’s true. The 2019 elections in Indonesia, along with being a historical country-wide happening, did cause a lot of commotion leading to the death of 270 staff who were appointed to count the 750 million ballot papers by hand. Overwork-related illness seems to be the key reason behind this death toll which has also made nearly 1878 staff sick.

The biggest single-day election was held on April 17 with 80% of the 192 million people casting their votes in around 800,000 polling booths spread across the length and breadth of the nation. The decision to combine both the legislative and Presidential election and to deliver the results in a very short duration had put pressure on the election commission which in turn over extracted work from the staff paving way to the death of several ballot counters.

Being the fourth country in the world with the highest population, shouldn’t have things been more organized? Especially when a nation-wide election is planned? While compensations to the survivors of the deceased staff are in progress, we believe it is the responsibility of the third largest democracy to value human lives more than anything. Proper health facilities and appropriate work hours were all that was needed to save the 270.

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