KUCHING: Sarawak will impose inter-zone travel restriction from Aug 1 till Aug 14 in hopes to curtail the worsening Covid-19 pandemic here.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said Zone 1 consists of Kuching, Serian and Samarahan divisions, which are classified as Yellow Zones, while Zone 2 consists of Sri Aman, Betong, Sarikei, Kapit, Mukah, Bintulu, Miri and Limbang divisions which are Green Zones.
“The federal government has approved the application by the state government to restrict inter-zone travel in Sarawak beginning Aug 1 till Aug 14.
“Any individual who wishes to travel between the zones must first apply for a permit from the police. However, travel within a zone is permitted,” he said during a press conference today.
We would like to restrict movement between the two zones because Kuching, Samarahan and Serian divisions are Yellow Zones, and we don’t want to infect the Green Zones,” he said.
Uggah, who is also Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman said businesses in the Yellow Zones would also be restricted to between 6am to 10pm for all sectors starting Aug 1 till Aug 14.
He added, the committee has also decided that flights from the peninsula, Sabah and Labuan into Sarawak would also be reduced beginning Aug 1 till Aug 14.
Uggah said those who are on official government duties, essential services, tending to the death of immediate family members, tending to critically ill immediate family members, and those who require medical attention or checkups are exempted from the inter-division travel restriction.
“The police will be manning roadblocks between the divisions starting August 1 to ensure people adhere to the inter-zone travel restrictions,” he said.
Meanwhile, Uggah highlighted the standard operating procedure (SOP) for all Malaysians including Sarawakians coming into the state from the peninsula, Sabah and Labuan, that they are required to undergo compulsory quarantine at designated quarantine centres.
He said their swab samples will be taken on the second day of their quarantine, and if negative for Covid-19 they will be released without needing to continue the remainder of the compulsory 14-day quarantine at home.
“All costs for quarantine and testing for them will be borne by the state government,” he added.
However for foreigners coming into the state from the peninsula, Sabah and Labuan, they would have to bear the costs for quarantine and testing themselves, Uggah explained.
For Malaysians and foreigners coming into the state from overseas, the same SOP as before still applies to them.
Uggah also announced the postponement of intake and semester of polytechnics and community colleges in the state until further notice.
Institutions affected by the postponement are Kuching Polytechnic Sarawak, Mukah Polytechnic Sarawak, Betong Metro Polytechnic Sarawak, Kuching Community College, Mas Gading Community College, Santubong Community College, Betong Communtiy College, Sarikei Community College and Miri Community College.