Sarawak DAP chief urges State govt to continue mass testing for Covid-19 to minimise risks

Chong Chieng Jen

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KUCHING, Sept 13: Certain measures must be adopted to minimise the risk of infection, illness, and death in order to open up the economy, says Sarawak Democratic Action Party (DAP) chairman Chong Chieng Jen.

Chong in a statement today, said the Sarawak government’s decision to not test close contacts of asymptomatic Covid-19 cases is dangerous especially given that all the children under 12-years-old are not vaccinated and a majority of those aged between 12 to 18 are still waiting to be vaccinated.

According to him, even if the government were to treat the Covid-19 pandemic as “endemic”, testing must continue so that people can take more precautions.

“Though the death rate may be low, but our current Covid death cases are many times more than the Covid death cases in the first year of the pandemic.

“To open up the economy, the government must continue with the mass testing and adopt a more effective test, trace and isolate strategy,” he said.

Chong, who is also the Kota Sentosa assemblyman, noted, currently, Covid-19 test results will only be known between three to five days after the collection of samples, which he deemed as far too slow and not acceptable.

“Those infected would have infected hundreds if not tens of others before their positive results were made known to them,” he added.

He also opined that other protocols which need improvement is the collection of “quarantine wristbands” for Covid-19 close contacts, but not those which have been tested.

He explained those Covid-19 close contacts are made to queue at wristband collection centres for hours before they receive the wristband, which unnecessarily exposes them to infection.

“The government should utilise the MySejahtera Applications as virtual quarantine wristbands, barring those supposedly serving home quarantine from all outlets,” he suggested. — DayakDaily