Pelagus rep: Kapit’s spike of 121 Covid-19 cases nothing to do with CM visit

Wilson Nyabong Ijang (file pic)

KUCHING, June 21: The recent spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in Kapit Division has nothing to do with Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg’s official visit to Kapit, says Pelagus assemblyman Wilson Nyabong Ijang.

He said the sudden increase of 121 new cases in Kapit recorded on June 21 was due to the delay in rapid test polymerase chain reaction (rT-PCR) results from the Sibu Hospital Pathological Department, which were partly accumulated from June 16 to 20.

There were seven samples on June 16, 12 samples on June 17, 71 samples on June 18, 29 samples on June 19 and another two samples on June 20, totaling up to 121 samples.

As for the recent overall uptrend in the Division’s number of cases, he said it was due to non-compliance of standard operating procedures (SOP) before and during the Gawai celebration.

“Adding to this, cockfighting activities around Ulu Pelagus and Merit areas also contributed directly to the Covid-19 infections in Ulu Pelagus and Merit sub-districts.

“The index case was found to be a Chinese man from Belaga who had participated the cockfighting activity at Rh Anthony, Ng Mujan Merit. He was later detected in the Bintulu Hospital after he exhibited symptoms of Covid-19,” he said in a statement yesterday (June 23).

According to the District Medical Officer Dr Hamidi, Nyabong said the total number of cases in Kapit Division between June 7 and 21 was 817 with 144 cases registered in town or suburb areas while the other 673 cases were from the villages (183), longhouses (456), logging and road construction camps (34).

“Hence, from the statistics and facts recorded, it is crystal clear that the recent sudden increase in the number of Covid-19 cases in Kapit Division has nothing to do with the Chief Minister’s official visit to Kapit (on June 10), as falsely alleged by certain quarters,” he said.

He urged the opposition to stop using the current Covid-19 pandemic as a political tool as he pointed out the statement June 22 made by Belaga Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) member Henry Usat Bit, claiming that CM’s visit on June 10 had resulted in the 121 cases in Kapit, was uncalled for and lacked evidence of truth.

Nyabong, who is also one of Kapit Division Disaster Management Committee’s (DDMC) advisors, said the government is putting in extra effort and funding to ensure that Sarawak achieves 80 per cent herd immunity by August. — DayakDaily