Painful decision: 50 allowed at wake; 30 only at burial site

Uggah at the Covid-19 press conference today (Jan 22, 2021).

By Ling Hui

KUCHING, Jan 22: Only 50 people s are allowed at wake at one time and 30 at burial sites in zones under Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).

State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said this was a tough yet necessary decision to be made after surges of Covid-19 cases were found related to such ceremonial events.

“I know issues of funerals are very sensitive and it is a very sad time for the families.

“But in this particular time when Sarawak’s positive cases have reached three digits and there are several cases where we found are related to funerals, we (SDMC), with great sorrow, plead for the rakyat in CMCO areas to limit the maximum number of individuals in funerals at one time to 50 only. And for the attendance rate to burial sites to be not more than 30 people.

“We hope the families concerned can understand that it is very painful for SDMC to make this type of ruling,” he said during the Covid-19 press conference at State Legislative Assembly (DUN) Complex here today.

He expressed hopes for the understanding of the people and the compliance of the standard operating procedures (SOPs) to avoid the repeat of past incidents.

Also for funerals but in MCO areas, only immediate family members are allowed while detailed SOPs will be released by the Unit for Other Religions (Unifor) and Sarawak Islamic Religious Department (JAIS).

With regards to social activities, Uggah said all social events and gatherings in villages and longhouses are not allowed in both MCO and CMCO areas.

Now with only 15 districts remaining as the Covid-19 green zones, he asserted that movements in and out of these green zones would be further tightened by the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM).

“Our aim now is to make sure the 15 districts continue to stay as green zones and for the yellow, orange and red zones to all turn green.

“That is why we will further tighten the movements between districts. We hope that if there are no urgent businesses, please stay at home or stay within your original zone,” he said.

The green zones in Sarawak are Lawas, Lundu, Bau, Tanjung Manis, Tebedu, Mukah, Matu, Saratok, Pusa, Kabong, Tatau, Daro, Song, Marudi and Telang Usan. — DayakDaily