Tuesday, October 19

MP to bring up new evacuation plan for stranded Malaysians


SIBU: Lanang MP Alice Lau says that she would bring up the plan for the second evacuation of Malaysians who are still stranded in China, due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak, to the attention of the federal government.

Lau with Wong.

In stating this, she acknowledges certain problems and difficulties, including those related to logistics, encountered by the government in bringing these Malaysians back home.

“Still, I will bring up this issue to the federal government regarding the second evacuation plan for the Malaysians still stranded in China,” she said in a statement yesterday.

Her remarks came following the request from Sarawak China Graduates Alumni Association chairman Dr Wong Siu Eing, who believed that the Malaysian government should have conducted proper surveillance before conducting the first evacuation plan.

A group of 107 Malaysians and their family members who were stranded in Hubei – the Chinese province that is worst hit by the 2019-nCoV outbreak – had arrived safely in Kuala Lumpur on Feb 4.

According to Wong, many Malaysians are still trapped in Hubei Province at the moment.

In this respect, he believed that they might feel abandoned after failing to get on the flight home from Wuhan.

Wong understood the logistical problems faced by both the Malaysian and Chinese governments due to the suspension of flights.

“However, there are always other means of transportation such as via land or sea, where the evacuees can be transported to other cities before being brought home,” he said, stressing that it was crucial for both the Malaysian and Chinese embassies to coordinate and negotiate plans properly so that all the Malaysians from Hubei Province could be evacuated in the soonest time possible.

He said while he understood that the suspension of many flights connecting to Wuhan Tianhe International Airport had made it more difficult to evacuate the Malaysians from the province, he insisted that there were still other ways.

In their discussion, Lau and Wong spoke about issues involving Sarawak students studying in Mainland China and Taiwan.

Lau said she had already brought up this matter to the attention of Transport Minister Anthony Loke, who had promised to look into it and also to talk to the airlines regarding ways to help the students there.