Barricades will not keep them in

Datuk Snowdan Lawan

KUCHING: No number of barricades is sufficient if self-awareness and discipline are ignored by the people in efforts to contain the Covid-19 pandemic especially in rural longhouses.

This was stated by Assistant Minister for Youth and Sports, Datuk Snowdan Lawan when commenting on longhouse residents escaping movement restriction order.

“Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg was right in pointing out about people escaping from their longhouses during movement control order (MCO).

“The government through the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) will step up efforts to curb this pandemic, as this pandemic is new to the people in the longhouses,” he said when contacted by New Sarawak Tribune.

Snowdan, who is also Balai Ringin assemblyman, was responding to reports that longhouses dwellers escaped through illicit trails or jalan tikus after not being able to withstand the prolonged lockdown period.

“People in the longhouses are too familiar with nature and jungle trekking because it is part of their routine while hunting and farming.

“They even know how to read time by looking at the location of the sun and not a watch. The valleys, the rivers and the terrains are far too familiar to them. Barricades will not suffice as an answer against such familiarity,” he stressed.

He affirmed that self-awareness and discipline were important to contain the spread of the pandemic.

“To block all the illicit routes is far too remote to achieve as they know more about the jungle.

“We welcome the move by the SDMC to accelerate communication channel to find ways and means to educate rural dwellers in respect of this pandemic.

“We will to continue to educate and spread awareness to our constituents over and again on this threat for the good of everyone,” he said.