Speeches
TALKING POINTS FOR YAB CHIEF MINISTER - COVID -19 UPDATE FOR SARAWAK
Deliver on 19 Apr 2021

Click here for talking points YAB Chief Minister - COVID19 Update for Sarawak pdf files.

 

 

TALKING POINTS FOR YAB CHIEF MINISTER - COVID -19 UPDATE FOR SARAWAK

THEME: “WE HAVE DONE IT BEFORE,

AND WE WILL DO IT AGAIN”

In managing COVID-19, the State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) had adopted the policy of full containment where we “Trace, Test, Quarantine and Isolate” when there is a positive case. With this in place, Sarawak had managed to flatten the curve before.

At the later part of 2020, after the Movement Control Order (MCO), Sarawak had managed to flatten the curve. Everyone understands the SOP and had complied. We had since experienced MCO1, MCO2, MCO3 and MCO4 – this has left a strain on the economic health for many Sarawakians.

During the Recovery Movement Control Order, Sarawak had managed to successfully maintain many green districts with only some yellow from the 25th November 2020 to the 7th January 2021.

We entered January with 35 Green Zones with only 5 Yellow Zones. The cases were low and we had managed to keep it down for a number of months.

This was only made possible because EVERYONE had played their part in adhering to the SOP. There was no need for compounds nor the need to penalize anyone. Everyone knew what to do and the level of awareness was high.

Unfortunately, on the 8th of January, we had imported cases entering Sarawak. From then onwards, the spread went all over the Sarawak. The numbers were gradually increasing but at a controlled rate. Some areas followed the SOP, while others didn’t.

We need to remind ourselves that we were able to flatten the curve before and we can do it again. This can only be done with the cooperation of many.

In light of the current trend of increase in a number of places, namely Sibu, Bintulu and Miri, we have decided to extend the Controlled Movement Order (CMCO) or PKPB (Perintah Kawalan Pergerakan Bersyarat) from the 13th April to the 26th of April 2021.

 

REMINDER TO PUBLIC

We have decided to continue the “Trace, Test, Quarantine and Isolate” when there is a positive case and maintain our 14 days quarantine for those entering Sarawak to avoid more imported cases.

Since January the 14 days quarantine policy had captured 60 positive cases returning from overseas (Import A) and 270 positive cases returning from other States (Import B). They were all in quarantine at the hotel.

The debate of imposing a MCO (PKP) versus CMCO (PKPB) is heated lately and I assure you that the SDMC has done its evaluation on the ground and had explained that during their experience with MCO Sibu, they were bogged down by a number of issues, namely in enforcement efforts.

Simply implementing MCO (PKP) for the Sarawak will burden many industries and destroy the livelihood of many. However, there is also a need for us to take drastic measures to cut the chain on infection given our limited healthcare resources and manpower reaching fatigue level.

 

ACTIONS TAKEN – TARGETED MCO AND TIGHTENING INTERDISTRICT TRAVEL

Therefore, after factoring all the concerns and risk assessment, the SDMC had decided to maintain its effort to implement the Targeted-Enhanced Movement Control Order (TEMCO) (PKPD) operation in targeted areas which had proven successful in containing the longhouse, neighbourhood and workplace spread.

Inter-district travel is also the main contributor of the spread of COVID-19. To date, there are 506 positive cases detected and 8 clusters form due to inter-district travel (Import C) since January 2021.

After evaluating the local situation of increasing COVID-19 numbers of import C, I have instructed the enforcement agencies such as the PDRM, UKPN, ATM, APM and RELA to tighten the inter-district travel control. Therefore, starting today, only essential services are allowed to cross zones with the permission of the police.

Other reasons for the rise of cases are also link to the lack of SOP compliance - especially through Social Gatherings.

To date, gatherings such as funerals had reported 3,612 positive cases from 8 clusters, with 31 deaths. Other gatherings such as family gatherings, birthday parties, farewell parties, festive gatherings, events such as gotong-royong and cock fighting, had resulted in 22 clusters, 1053 positive cases and 5 deaths.

I would like to extend my condolences to all the family members of those who have lost their loved ones due to COVID-19.

 

ADVICE TO PUBLIC

Although the enforcement agencies are doing their part to enforce the law by issuing compounds to those that flaunt the law, I urge everyone, to comply with the SOPs. Only with the cooperation and awareness by the public we have done in the past, we can win. We will win.

I would like to thank the frontliners for being so selfless in handling the pandemic, the public for being cooperative and complied with the public health Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). For as long as the vaccine is not available, the entire globe will have to live with the COVID-19. Therefore, I would like to urge everyone to remain vigilant, stay healthy, stay safe and adhere to the SOPs.

 

LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL: VACCINATION ROLL OUT

As for the vaccination roll-out plan, Sarawak is on track.

I have approved to set up a group of experts to form the Sarawak COVID-19 Advisory Group (SCOVAG) to keep the SDMC updated on global vaccine news, research and advise us on the vaccine suitable for Sarawakians and set up the COVID-19 Immunisation Task Force Sarawak (CITF) team to deal with the coordination of the COVID-19 Vaccine preparedness. The Sarawak Government has been ever ready to assist with the National Immunisation Plan to expedite its roll out plan.

For the supply of vaccine, I have given the greenlight for Sarawak to purchase sufficient vaccine to expedite the immunisation coverage for Sarawakians.

YB Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, the Chairman for SDMC had met with YB Khairy Jamaluddin, Minister of Science Technology and Innovation who is also the National COVID-19 Immunisation

Programme Co-ordinating Minister last week to discuss on legal obligations for Sarawak to purchase its supply of vaccines. I was informed that YB Khairy had assured us that they will support in supplying Sarawak with enough vaccine to meet Sarawak’s goal to complete its vaccination plan by end of August.

I was also informed that all Residents in the 12 Divisions are working very hard with their Divisional Disaster Management Committee (DDMC) on the planning in preparation for the arrival of the vaccine. So far we have identified and submitted 279 venues throughout Sarawak to be designated as the Vaccination Center or Pusat Pemberian Vaksin (PPV).

The second phase of the vaccination roll-out plan where appointments have been given out by the Special Committee of Ensuring Access to COVID-19 Vaccine Supply (JKJAV) will begin on the 19th April 2021 onwards.

Phase 2 will focus on the elderly and those who have comorbidities. We anticipate phase 3 to begin in May 2021 subjected to vaccine supply.

Therefore, I urge everyone to register to be vaccinated via the JKJAV website or via the MySejahtera application. Those who do not have access to both can also register through their closest District Office or Residen Offices.

I would like to ensure the public that it is the Sarawak Government under the stewardship of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) upmost priority, to safeguard Sarawak interest and to bring Sarawak and its people to greater heights.

Speeches By: YAB DATUK PATINGGI (DR) ABANG HAJI ABDUL RAHMAN ZOHARI BIN TUN DATUK ABANG HAJI OPENG