Using our own resources

Chief Minister says S’wak has to use its own means to contain rabies, can’t depend on fed govt

Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah

KUCHING: Sarawak government will mobilise its resources to help contain the current rabies situation in the state.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, who said this yesterday, pointed out that “there has not been fast enough decision of the federal government on rabies”.

“What we do (is that) we use our state money first because we cannot delay as it is very important.

“The state will do it while at the same time we will negotiate with the federal government,” he said when met by reporters after launching Majlis Qurban Aidiladha at Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Satok branch along Jalan Kulas here.

On Wednesday, a five-year-old boy, believed to be Sarawak’s 13th rabies victim, passed away while undergoing treatment at Sarawak General Hospital (SGH).

If the boy is confirmed to have died of rabies, it means 13 persons have succumbed to the disease thus far.

Health Ministry director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah confirmed in a press statement issued Wednesday that a 44-year-old man from Jalan Matang, who died Tuesday morning, was Sarawak’s 12th rabies victim.

Dr Noor Hisham said the 12th rabies victim had no history of dog or animal bites based on information received.

Meanwhile, another three areas, including one in Betong, have been declared as rabies-infected.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, who is also State Disaster Management Committee chairman, said the areas are Rumah Lanchun, Sungai Tenggang and Sri Golden Fame Oil Palm Plantation, Pantu – both in Sri Aman, as well as Simpang Kawasan Layar in Betong.

Betong is the latest division in Sarawak to have a rabies infected area.

Prior to yesterday’s declaration, there was only one area affected in Sri Aman.

In total, 36 areas in Sarawak have been gazetted as rabies-infected.

Apart from Betong and Sri Aman, the other divisions with several rabies-infected areas are Serian, Kuching, Samarahan, and Sarikei.

The size of a rabies-infected area is within a 10km-radius from point zero.

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