Masing speaking to reporters at a press conference. Photo: Mohd Alif Noni

KUCHING: Apart from closing the border gates to Kalimantan and Sabah in the light of the current escalating Covid-19 situation, no further reinforcement measures will be taken for the time being.

“At the moment, we are okay. But for the protection of the Sarawak people, we must close our gates,” said Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing.

He told a press conference this after officiating at the workshop on administration of contracts towards project delivery excellence for Sarawak government projects at UCSI Hotel here today.

Masing said he was pleased that the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) had agreed with the suggestion to close the border gates.

He said that jalan tikus (illegal routes) had been blocked as well but pointed out that some people might still slip through.

“However, we have stopped the big ones as much as we can. Tikus are a sneaky group of people who go through and there is nothing much we can do — but these make up a small percentage,” he said.

Earlier this month, Masing, who chairs the Border Security Committee, said that Sarawak had closed its border gates with Indonesia until Dec 3 to curb the spread of Covid-19 into the state. 

This was in light of the rising number of Covid-19 cases in regions near Sarawak as well as nationwide.