Rats have created a serious sanitation problem in Jakarta, particularly in low-income residential areas, spurring the Jakarta administration to launch a campaign against the rodents, which are responsible for spreading various diseases.
Jakarta Deputy Governor Djarot Saiful Hidayat said on Tuesday that the administration would involve as many people as possible to fight the rats and would offer compensation to those who managed to capture the animals, which predators seem reluctant to catch.
Djarot said the city administration would pay Rp 20,000 (US$1.54) per rat. “The campaign is now taking place. Just collect the rats and we will communicate with the heads of community and neighborhood units,” Djarot said in Jakarta on Tuesday.
Rats are known as vectors of various diseases that can affect humans, such as hantavirus, rat-bite fever, the plague, murine typhus, leptospirosis, swine dysentery and salmonella. Rats can spread disease through their fur, saliva, urine and droppings.
The rat population has increased rapidly because Jakarta’s cats, which typically prey on rodents, do not dare to catch the rats as many of them are almost as big as felines, the deputy governor added.
Djarot said after buying captured rats from residents, the administration would bury them in certain places to use as fertilizer. “They have to be buried so that they will not cause diseases,” he added.