A COVID-positive Indonesian man has disguised himself as his wife so that he could board a domestic flight, an official in Jakarta said.
The man used his wife’s identification card and negative COVID-19 test certificate to be allowed to fly from Jakarta to Ternate on the northern island of Maluku on Sunday, said Nandang Sukarna, general manager at Halim Perdanakusuma Airport.
The man, identified only by his initials DW, wore a full-face veil to board the flight.
A flight attendant saw the man change clothes before leaving the aircraft and alerted airport authorities, he said.
“His intention was simply to use someone else’s negative PCR test so he could fly,” Nandang said, referring to the polymerase chain reaction test for the virus.
The man was detained after the plane landed and was tested immediately, local media reported. He was ordered to self-isolate at home after the test turned out positive.
Police say they will move to prosecute him as soon as his quarantine ends.
Indonesia has imposed travel restrictions amid a rapid surge in coronavirus cases since last month, driven by the highly transmissible Delta variant.
As part of measures to curb the spread of COVID-19, airline passengers are required to produce proof of vaccination and a negative coronavirus test certificate before boarding flights.
Indonesia reported a record daily number of 1,566 COVID-19 deaths on Friday, taking total fatalities to 80,598, data from the country’s COVID-19 task force showed. It also recorded 49,071 new coronavirus infections, bringing the total number of cases to more than three million.
Indonesia’s daily death toll has been consistently above 1,000 since July 16.
The explosion in COVID-19 cases has overwhelmed hospitals across the islands of Java and Bali in recent weeks.