Lavenia Mawas

KUCHING: Sarawak Workers Party (SWP) is urging the state government to give cash assistance to Sarawakians that are stranded in various parts of the country due to the movement control order (MCO).

Its secretary general Lavenia Mawas said the case of a man who recently leapt from the first floor of a building due to stress caused by the travel ban and cash worries could be taken as both an example and a warning which should be given much attention.

“I believe there are hundreds or even thousands more cases of people worrying about cash; for example, those who are stranded in hotels or apartments.

“SWP received a lot of reports. Those who approached the authorities could not get help because the authorities still don’t have the proper standard operating procedure (SOP) to handle the matter,” she said in a statement. 

She said many Sarawakians in Kuala Lumpur were stranded in hotels and apartments as there were no flights; not even rescheduled ones. All of them worry about cash. They can’t pay their hotel or apartment bills and food. 

“Genuine cases should be brought to the authorities by the hotels or apartment owners working together with the affected customers. Hotels or apartment owners must identify stranded customers and bring them to the attention of the authorities,” she said. 

Lavenia said since the government could help those stranded overseas, she believed those stranded in the country should be helped too.

“We urge the government not to ignore these people. Hotels and apartments should also consider the problems of their customers due to the MCO,” she said.