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KUCHING, Aug 23: Bintulu MP Dato Seri Tiong King Sing calls on the Bintulu District Disaster Management Committee (BDDMC) to make it compulsory for foreign workers to possess letters from their employers in order to take an rt-PCR test.
According to Tiong, this is important in order to protect the health and safety of all people in Bintulu due to the current influx of foreign workers which has caused a sharp rise in confirmed cases.
“Law enforcement agencies must take strict actions to apprehend irresponsible middlemen, agents, and employers who selfishly exploit loopholes to stop the terrible consequences of rising cases.
“These steps are urgently needed because over the past few weeks, the confirmed case data among foreign workers have been consistent, making the pandemic prevention efforts in Bintulu more difficult,” he said in a statement today.
Tiong noted employers have continued to import foreign labour illegally without a thought to the consequences of their actions, and have been perfectly willing to look the other way if their workers bring in the virus.
He said when their infected workers disappear, these irresponsible employers shirk all follow-up actions and simply let the government fix the problem.
These employers, he continued, have ignored the importance of preventing the pandemic for the sake of their own selfish interests, to the extent of working with Indonesian and local middlemen to smuggle in foreign workers through ‘jalan tikus’ (illegal trails).
“Some of these workers were even found to be infected but that conveniently became the frontliners’ problem, and unfortunately, this mentality continues and more and more illegal foreigners continue to come in and hammer the pandemic prevention efforts,” he added.
To make matters worse, Tiong said, the foreign workers who are positively diagnosed with COVID-19 refuse to cooperate with the Health Department by telling the truth when interviewed about their whereabouts.
“This makes it incredibly difficult for the authorities to find their close contacts to carry out the necessary quarantining and testing work.
“This will inevitably cause the virus to spread even more widely. Totally unfair to all other people who have complied with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to prevent transmissions of Covid-19,” he said. – DayakDaily.