Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian

KUCHING: Sarawak will continue to maintain its movement control order (MCO) time restriction from 7am to 7pm instead of following the new nationwide time restriction from 8am to 8pm.

Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian said that the State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) had decided this after a discussion.

“This is because Sarawakians are already used to it and the sunrise time here is much earlier than in the Peninsula.

“Hopefully, there will be no confusion among the public and everyone will remain at home to break the chain of transmission of Covid-19,” he said.

Asked whether there would be stricter enforcement by the police during the second phase of the MCO, Sim said the police could increase the roadblocks.

“What the people really need to do is to stay at home during the MCO period.

“How many more can we put in jail and if they infect others in jail, what is going to happen?

“That is why we keep on reminding and pleading everybody to have self-discipline. We may suffer a bit more now but it is for the good of everybody.   

“This does not mean that when the situation improves during the MCO, people can simply move around the following week.

“When fewer cars and people go out, there should be fewer positive Covid-19 cases and deaths. We should maintain this way, right?

“We are not competing with Italy to see who has the most deaths, and we don’t want to experience what Italy is facing with the increasing death toll,” he said.

Dr Sim added that it is best for Sarawakians to adhere to the MCO so that the Covid-19 curve could be flattened.

“This is a serious matter and we are doing this not because of politics.

“We want to ensure every Sarawakian is protected and safe from this pandemic,” he added.