Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

KUCHING: Of the 544 Covid-19 positive cases in Sarawak, 21 cases are imported cases from overseas.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said of the 21, 10 were from Indonesia, four from England, and one each from the Netherlands, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Russia, the United States, Singapore and Brunei Darussalam.

“…while a total of 49 cases were imported cases from other states in Malaysia…39 cases originated from the Sri Petaling cluster in Kuala Lumpur, including seven in Debak, Betong,” he said during the Covid-19 daily update press conference at the old State Legislative Assembly (DUN) building here yesterday.

Uggah, who is also the State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman, said for this reason, the state was still keeping very strict control on any Sarawakian returning from West Malaysia, Labuan and Sabah.

“For the Kuching conference cluster, a total of 68 cases out of 190 cases were detected outside Kuching, including 55 cases from Samarahan, nine cases from Serian, two cases from Miri and one case each from Sri Aman and Bintulu.

“In other words, these incidents in Kota Samarahan, Serian, Miri, Sri Aman and Bintulu are due to movement from Kuching. Because that is the origin of the cluster, then that is where it gets into these areas,” he said.

He said as such the above pattern had to stop, whereby the state would not want any more spread through movement from district to district, division to division.

“That is why the Sarawak government decided not to allow inter-district movement, the purpose is to ensure that the chain of transmission can be broken, especially in the rural areas,” he said.

Uggah said this was also why the state did not allow people to go back to their hometowns for the coming Gawai and Hari Raya celebrations.

“This is because, if they are staying in Kuching and going back to Kapit, Betong, because we don’t know it might spread due to the movement of people. And that is why our policy is based on facts.

“Together, we all play an important role to protect Sarawak from the second wave of Covid-19,” he said.