Imposition of MCO in Sarawak to be known tomorrow

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KUCHING: Whether or not the movement control order (MCO) will be re-imposed in Sarawak will be known tomorrow.

Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas is scheduled to clarify the confusion over Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s announcement today Sarawak will be placed under MCO for two weeks, starting from April 16, following a drastic surge in new Covid-19 infections.  

Uggah, who is also the deputy chief minister, in a WhatsApp message forwarded to the press said: “Tell them (pressmen) I will make the announcement tomorrow.”

Today, rumours were rife that Sarawak will be placed under the MCO starting today after a viralled infographics stated that five districts in Sarawak will be placed under MCO from April 16 to 29.

It all started with an ‘announcement’ by Ismail Sabri in Kuala Lumpur that seven districts in Kelantan and five in Sarawak would be placed under MCO.

The minister was quoted by several Malaya-based news outlets as having said that the affected districts in Kelantan would come under MCO after the Health Ministry found a 30.5 percent spike in new infections, from 756 to 1,088 cases.

The districts are Kota Baru, Pasir Mas, Pasir Puteh, Bachok, Machang, Tumpat and Tanah Merah.

In the same news, Sabri was also quoted as saying that Kuching, Bintulu, Miri, Sibu and Meradong would also be placed under the MCO following a sharp increase in new infections.

He said the ministry found a 52% increase of cases in Sarawak during the past 14 days from 2,761 to 4,197, with new clusters detected every week.

The statement quoting Sabri on the MCO announcement was carried by various online news portals but was later taken down. However, by then, it had gone viral across social media.

Sarawak recorded 489 new cases today taking its total to 21,448.

Based on updates from SDMC, Bintulu recorded 1,111 cases in the last 14 days, Sibu had 824, Miri (538), Kuching (490) and Meradong (272) over the same period.

In a separate development the Sibu Divisional Disaster Management Committee (DDMC) announced that it would implement MCO in Sibu’s Zone 1 to Zone 7.

DDMC chairman Wong Hie Sieng said the zones covered Sukun-Lada, Mantis, Poh Yew, Bukit Lima, Tong Sang, Bandar Sibu and Tiong Hua.

“We have agreed to impose specific restrictions and SOPs on residents living in Zone 1 to Zone 7 effective April 16 to 26,” he said.

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