By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, April 27: Returning Sarawakian students whose final destinations are located in green zones will have to undergo a compulsory 14-day quarantine in Kuching and Covid-19 testing twice with the aim to maintain the Covid-19-free status of those areas.
According to Senior Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof who is currently making arrangements for some 7,000 Sarawakian students to return home, such strict measures are only applicable to students returning to their homes in locations which do not have any reported Covid-19 cases such as Kapit.
For students whose final destinations are not in green zones, they may be quarantined until their Covid-19 test results are out, or they may be quarantined at home while awaiting their test results.
“I want to inform parents and students, they (all returning Sarawakian students) don’t go straight back home. After reaching Kuching, they will be brought to quarantine centres for testing. Once the results are out, if they are negative, they will be sent home. Or they may be tested and sent home for quarantine.
“Except for those going back to green zones. They need to be quarantined in Kuching for 14 days. After 14 days, they are going to be tested again. Only after they test negative again, then can they go back to their respective villages.
“This is important to ensure not only the safety of our students and their families but also to maintain the green zone status of their hometowns. This is the aim of the Sarawak government,” Fadillah disclosed in an interview after a special meeting on the Covid-19 situation with Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba here yesterday,
The Petrajaya MP expects the task will involve some 7,000 Sarawakian students who are stranded in Peninsular Malaysia due to the implementation of the movement control order which has been in effect since March 18.
He revealed he is in the midst of chartering flights, and when that is done, the students will be sent back in stages. It has to be done in stages due to the limited capacity of quarantine centres.
Fadllah also disclosed that presently he is still in the midst of gathering information with regards to the students in terms of their locations and final destinations in Sarawak.
To ease the arrangement, the students’ flights home will be managed according to four zones — East Coast zone where they will return from Terengganu; the Central zone, where the students will board flights at KLIA; the Southern zone, where they will depart from Johor Bahru and the Northern zone where they will return via Pulau Pinang.
These students, revealed Fadillah, will arrive in Kuching, Sibu, Bintulu and Miri respectively. — DayakDaily