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SIBU, Jan 24 — Public compliance with the standard operating procedure (SOP) set under the movement control order (MCO) here is not at its optimal level, local council heads have observed.
Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) chairman Clarence Ting said in view of Sibu being the only division in Sarawak being imposed with MCO, strict adherence to the SOP among members of the public was crucial in flattening the Covid-19 curve.
“Yesterday (Friday), we went through the most horrendous day since Covid-19 pandemic started.
“There were 168 positive cases reported, with 89 cases from Pasai Siong Cluster. The news this morning (yesterday) reported that more longhouses (in Sibu) would be put under lockdown due to worsening condition.
“But what concerns me even more is the 79 positive cases (from the total 168, involving those who underwent screening at health facilities in Sibu) – these 79 positive cases signify that Covid-19 is everywhere in Sibu; that nowhere is safe.
“(To the people of Sibu), only go out only when it is absolutely necessary,” he wrote on his Facebook page yesterday, reminding those who had to go out to have their face masks on at all times.
“That’s why dine-in (at eateries) is prohibited — when you eat, you need to remove your mask; or when you smoke at the designated smoking area, that’s where you come into contact with other individuals with your mask down.
“Throughout the pandemic, we need everyone to take care of themselves first — only then would you be able to look after others, especially your family members,” he added.
Meanwhile, Sibu Rural District Council (SRDC) chairman Sempurai Petrus Ngelai had observed that over the past week, many cars were still seen going around Sibu town and Sibu Jaya Central Business District (CBD) during the MCO period.
“I could see many vehicles parked at these business premises.
“I believe that those operating the essential services are following the SOP.
“But the issue at the moment is whether the business premises here that are still opening — are they categorised as those providing the essential services as specified by the SDMC (Sarawak Disaster Management Committee) or the NSC (National Security Council)?” he questioned.
“We need the cooperation from everyone, including those from the business community — those not classified as essential services need to close their premises during the MCO period.
“In order to flatten the Covid-19 curve, we need to stay at home and strictly follow the SOP,” he stressed.
Sempurai said a SRDC monitoring team, jointly run with the police and other relevant agencies, had been doing rounds in Sibu Jaya and in this respect, he said: “There is room for improvement.” — Borneo Post Online