By Karen Bong
SIBU, April 22: Photocopy services, ornamental fish shops, pet shops, departmental stores, travel agencies, hardware stores, spare parts stores, optical stores, car spraying workshops, sawmills and those selling non-essentials are among businesses not allowed to operate in Sibu until April 26.
Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) chairman Clarence Ting warned that there is a high chance that the tighter restrictions currently imposed in Sibu will be extended for another 14 days if people do not comply now and the Covid-19 situation does not improve within the coming days.
With healthcare facilities currently stretched beyond capacity, he emphasised that there were photos going around social media showing children sleeping on the floor waiting for beds.
“Not only children but other patients who needed to be warded including old people and adults.
“A lot of people are saying this (situation) is bad but it will get worse if (the) Covid-19 (outbreak) worsens if we continue not to bother (with standard operating procedure compliance),” he said during a Facebook livestream session today.
Highlighting he understands the grim and unfortunate situation currently affecting businesses and other industry sectors affected by the restrictions, Ting however urged people to ponder the greater impact on the economic sector if the Covid-19 situation does not improve in Sibu.
“We have seen Covid-19 worsening in Sibu for three-and-a-half months now and if cases continue to go up until 200 due to lack of compliance to SOP (standard operating procedure), what kind of business can open in the near future?
“SDDMC (Sibu Division Disaster Management Committee) has mentioned yesterday that all affected sectors will be opened up slowly when the situation improves.
“So take a rest for a few days as we want to reduce movement of people and crowding for the next four days,” he said, urging people not to put their businesses first during this critical period.
Among essential services allowed to operate are all sectors related to the food supply chain including production, manufacturing and distribution, eateries and food stalls (for takeaways and deliveries only), computer repairs and services, book stores, stationery shops, motorcycle servicing, hotels, Airbnb or paid accommodation, agriculture, fishery, livestock, plantation, farming and any servicing services apart from sales. — DayakDaily