KUCHING: Stutong Community Market has finally reopened today after two weeks of closure, following the detection of Covid-19 cases previously.
Kuching South City Council (MBKS) Mayor Dato Wee Hong Seng said it was understandable that not many customers were seen on the first day of the market reopening today, after being ordered to shut for two weeks.
“I would like to thank all the hawkers and the association for giving us full cooperation for the Covid-19 testing two weeks ago. The state Health Department had actually spent two days taking the samples of over 600 people in the market, including that of hawkers, helpers and their family members,” he said during a visit to the market today.
Wee said the state health department had just recently issued a letter permitting the market to operate starting Aug 1 and the market was finally opened for business today after a mass cleaning and disinfection exercise were carried out yesterday.
“We are here to support the hawkers in Stutong markets to restore confidence and bring back customers here,” he said, adding there was no need for the public to be afraid of visiting the market as long as everyone follows the standard operating procedures (SOPs).
The Mayor, however, said only about 25 to 30 per cent of the businesses at the market had resumed today because the hawkers were given a late notice on the re-opening of the market.
On a separate matter, Wee criticised certain quarters for spreading unfounded rumours regarding the hawkers at the market for not adhering to the authorities’ instructions to self-quarantine.
“If you have nothing better else to do, please help us to pick up the all the used face masks thrown at roadsides, rather than go and create these rumours, which are unnecessary.”
Wee said the hawkers had been strictly obeying the state Health Department’s directive to undergo home quarantine for two weeks and he urged certain parties to refrain from politicising the efforts in containing Covid-19.
He added other smaller markets like those in Sungai Apong, Petanak and Kenyalang will be subjected to random testing for Covid-19 as part of a wider effort to be ahead of the Covid-19 transmission.
Besides that, Wee said brochures indicating the recommended precautionary practices will soon be put up at eateries, markets and public areas.
He said the council has prepared three versions of brochures to be put up at specific areas for the public to refer on the precautionary measures required to take during this period of Covid-19 pandemic.