Wee (third right) hands over a packet of face masks and a SOP pamphlet to a trader at Stutong Market.

KUCHING: Stutong Community Market officially resumed operations today after 14 days of closure.

Kuching South City Council (MBKS) mayor Datuk Wee Hong Seng visited the market and distributed face masks and pamphlets on the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to the traders.

The market was cleaned and disinfected last Saturday.

“After being closed for two weeks, the State Health Department has given the green light for the hawkers or vendors to resume their businesses,” Wee told reporters after his walkabout at the market today.

He also revealed that the Health Department spent two days taking test samples from over 600 people in the market including the hawkers, helpers and their family members.

The market was closed on July 18 due to the detection of positive Covid-19 cases from it.

Wee said the hawkers and traders had followed the strict quarantine rules set by the Health Department.

“It is understandable that not many customers are seen on the first day of the market reopening.

“Only 25 to 30 percent of the hawkers and traders resumed their businesses, due to a late notice on the re-opening of the market,” explained Wee.

“The council has printed out two SOP pamphlets — one for the markets and one for coffee shops and restaurants — that we will distribute in the area,” he said.

Wee (front, centre) and MBKS councillors holding two versions of the SOP pamphlets for markets and coffee shops.

Wee also reminded the hawkers and traders at the market and visitors to maintain a high standard of personal hygiene and wear face masks for everyone’s safety.

He also revealed that hawkers and traders at other markets such as Kubah Ria, Sungai Maong, Petanak and Sungai Apong would also go for Covid-19 swab tests.

“Smaller markets like those in Sungai Apong, Petanak and Kenyalang will be subjected to random testing for Covid-19,” he said.

On a separate matter, Wee criticised individuals for spreading unfounded rumours that hawkers at the market were trading illegally at other markets.

“If you have nothing else better to do, help us pick up all the used face masks thrown along the roadsides,” said Wee.

He added that the state government is currently giving priority to Covid-19 issues in the state.