KUCHING: The Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) has decided to reinstate the requirement for foreigners and non-Sarawakians to apply via EnterSarawak before coming to the state.
SDMC said the State Health Department (JKNS) had proposed that application for admission through EnterSarawak was still needed for non-citizens and Malaysians who are not from Sarawak (non-Sarawakians) to facilitate contact tracing by the health office.
As such, SDMC had taken the technical recommendation into consideration and agreed to enforce the improvements on entry procedure into Sarawak which was announced in a media statement JPBN Bill 289A/2021 dated Oct 16.
“SDMC would like to clarify that the latest entry procedure into Sarawak aims to facilitate entry into the state especially for Sarawakians and individuals residing in the state while reducing the risk of Covid-19 transmission.
“We hope that all parties will be patient and give their cooperation in controlling the Covid-19 transmission in Sarawak,” it said in a statement on Wednesday (Oct 20).
The committee stated that JKNS had reviewed the Covid-19 situation in Malaysia and Sarawak’s border control before providing recommendations to improve the entry procedure for travelers into the state.
“For the purpose of facilitating contact tracing by the divisional and district health offices for travelers entering Sarawak when there are positive cases detected, JKNS proposed that application for admission through EnterSarawak is still needed for non-citizens and Malaysians who are not from Sarawak (non-Sarawakians) other than those working or residing in Sarawak where the purpose of entry is clear with a residential address readily available.
“For those who are not residing in Sarawak, the information on EnterSarawak will facilitate contact tracing so that control measures can be taken promptly,” it explained.
The committee noted that JKNS said the information on movement history was crucial which must be reported to facilitate quick case detection and contact tracing.
“For example, the Bintulu Health Office had one positive case detected this month who had movement from Kuala Lumpur to Sarawak. The case arrived in Sarawak and had a lot of movements as well as stayed in several hotels before the individual was detected positive.
“The case had also gone to Bakun and after returning from Bakun to Bintulu, the case was detected positive through screening of symptomatic individuals,” it said.
As for cases that do not have information such as telephone number, address, and movement like the four illegal immigrants who were detected in Sibu district late last year, JKNS said it was very difficult for the health team to detect the cases.
“This resulted in members of the public including bus passengers, contacts at accommodation and others being exposed to the case before he or she was detected,” it said.
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