MCO: Stranded Sarawakian students may make own arrangements to return to hometowns

Abang Johari speaking at the press confrence as Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah looks on.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, April 9: Sarawakian students stranded in universities and colleges in Peninsular Malaysia may return to their hometowns on their own as a possible Movement Control Order (MCO) extension looms.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg advised this in responding to a question if the state government has discussed the plight of Sarawakian students under lockdown in universities and colleges in Peninsular Malaysia who want to return to their hometowns if the MCO is extended beyond April 14.

“They can come back on their own but they have to be quarantined (for) 14 days in Sarawak,” he told a press conference after chairing the State Security Council meeting here today.

Enforced by the state government effective April 5, all Sarawakians returning from overseas, Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah, Federal Territory and Labuan will immediately be placed in designated quarantine facilities set up statewide to undergo a 14-day quarantine.

The Malaysian Insight reported today that many parents from Sarawak and Sabah are worried sick about their children in lockdown in universities and colleges after the MCO was imposed on March 18.

The students have been told to stay on campuses throughout the MCO period with the institutions looking after their food and welfare.

According to the report, some parents have urged Putrajaya to arrange the logistics so that students could travel back to their hometowns safely.

Students themselves, with some stuck in rented accommodation, also want to return to their families and are hoping the government will craft a plan to give them safe passage home.

Meanwhile, the federal government is expected to make the much awaited announcement on whether the MCO will be further extended tomorrow (April 10).

The MCO was initially enforced from March 18 until 31, but extended to April 14.

For the record, Malaysia recorded 4,119 Covid-19 cases and 65 deaths as of yesterday (April 8). There were 69 Covid-19 sporadic cases where the sources of infection have yet to be traced. — DayakDaily