JAKARTA, Indonesia 

With strict COVID-19 protocols in place, millions of voters turned out to cast their ballots for local elections in Indonesia on Wednesday.

According to the General Elections Commission, some 100 million people – about one-third of the country’s population – were registered to vote in 270 constituencies, including 224 districts and 37 cities, to elect mayors, governors, and other officials.

Despite the looming fears in the virus-hit country, the commission said the final voter turnout was expected to be around 77.5%.

Arif Budiman, the authority’s chairman, said at a news conference that the elections “went well in general.”

He said voters were seen wearing masks and gloves, sanitizing their hands while entering and exiting polling stations, going through temperature checks, and observing physical distancing rules.

The Election Supervisory Agency, however, said officials posted at 1,172 polling stations had previously tested positive for COVID-19.

“It is imperative to check whether they had completely recovered or not,” Mochammad Afifuddin, the agency’s commissioner, said at a news conference.

Indonesia’s coronavirus tally currently stands at 592,900, including 18,171 deaths and 487,445 recoveries, according to latest Health Ministry figures.

*Writing by Rhany Chairunissa Rufinaldo with Anadolu Agency’s Indonesian-language service in Jakarta

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