Sharp increase likely due to Delta variant


SIBU: The sharp increase in the Covid-19 positive cases here is most likely due to the Delta variant, said Sibu Divisional Disaster Management Committee (DDMC) coordinator Dr Annuar Rapaee. 

Dr Annuar expressed his concern over the spread of the variant and the surge in number of cases that reached up to three-digit figures over the past three days.

He said this during the virtual update on the details of the Sibu district’s Covid-19 cases on Saturday (Aug 28).

“Although the health department did not send every sample to Kuching for the Delta variant validation test, judging from the current situation here, it is probably the variant.

“This is because the variant spreads quickly and can easily infect anyone,” said the Assistant Minister of Local Government and Housing.

At the same time, he urged those who had close contacts with Covid-19 positive cases to undergo screening or swab test as soon as possible.

He added those who were affected must isolate themselves at home and stay away from other family members as well as try not to mix with anyone until the screening test results were out.

“This is the only way to reduce the number of cases in the Sibu district. I hope this week’s figures can be an eye opener and create awareness for all communities. They are a drastic leap.

“Even though the death toll is low, we must remember that if the number of cases continues to increase, then the death toll will also increase. We must take this matter seriously,” said the Assistant Minister of Education, Science and Technology Research.

According to Dr Annuar, most of the cases occurred in the workplace and that the infections spread among family members.

Because of this, he reminded everyone in the workplace to adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) strictly.

Dr Annuar, who is also the Nangka assemblyman, advised everyone to wear double face masks and face shields when visiting crowded places such as the supermarkets.

“Everyone is worried about what is happening in the Sibu district, so let’s all play our part. We want to try and reduce those cases to below 500 or 400 cases next week.

“No one is to be blamed for the escalation in the number of cases,’’ he said.

Dr Annuar added that the authorities were doing their best to set policies and guidelines to reduce the number of cases. 

For instance, the Sibu Municipal Council has specifically set the number of tables and chairs allowed in coffee shops.

“Unfortunately, there are still a number of people who do not comply with the guidelines set by the council,” he said.

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