The state government has instructed all plantations in Sabah to undertake Covid-19 screening for their workers.
This came after two new clusters involving infection among estate workers were detected. The clusters are the Baturong Cluster in Kunak and the Ladang Matamba Cluster in Lahad Datu.
Sabah Covid-19 spokesperson Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said the Ladang Baturong cluster registered 44 infections today, taking the cumulative cases to 54, and Ladang Matamba cluster recorded four new infections, taking the cumulative cases to 20.
Tired of poor sanitary conditions of the bathrooms and toilets, four patients at the Likas Covid-19 low-risk quarantine centre here took matters into their own hands and decided to clean the facilities themselves.
One of them also posted their clean-up efforts on Facebook on Jan 9 while complaining about the conditions at the centre in the Likas sports complex.
Three days after his viral post, health officials moved in to clean up the bathrooms and toilets.
In another Facebook post on Tuesday (Jan 12), the man thanked the Health Department for cleaning up the place and hoped that they would keep it up.
The Sabah police has set up 50 roadblocks at strategic locations, including at inter-district entry and exit routes in the state for the enforcement of the 14-day movement control order (MCO) beginning last night.
Sabah Head of Internal Security and Public Order, ACP Khalid Saion said this was to ensure the public complied with all regulations at the prescribed standard operating procedures (SOP) set by the government in an effort to break the chain of the Covid-19 transmission in the state.
He said about 4,000 security personnel, including from the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM), the Malaysian Volunteer Department (Rela) and the Malaysian Civil Defence Force (APM) would be on duty at the 24-hour roadblocks.
Sabah agrees with the Federal Government’s decision to impose a two-week movement control order (MCO) for the state beginning Jan 13.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said the MCO was necessary to stop the exponential increase of Covid-19 cases in the state.
He urged the public to heed directives from the authorities and observe the standard operations procedures (SOP) to stop the chain of infection.
On Monday (Jan 11), a total of 374 new cases were detected bringing the Covid-19 infection cumulative total to 41,040 in Sabah.
One fatality was also reported on Sunday.
Tandek assemblyman from Parti Bersatu Sabah Hendrus Anding, has been confirmed positive for Covid-19.
Hendrus, who is assistant minister to State Agriculture and Fishery Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, said he was found positive in his hometown in Kota Marudu.
He is currently being quarantined at a low-risk treatment centre in Kota Belud.
"I'm feeling fine and I have no symptoms whatsoever. No treatment is required for me - I feel healthy," said Hendrus, as quoted in a portal.
The Sabah government is urging people not to spread unverified reports about the Covid-19 pandemic.
The office of the Sabah Local Government and Housing Ministry under Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said the public should refer to official statements released by the National Security Council (NSC), Health Ministry and official statements issued by Masidi himself.
"On behalf of the minister, we urge people to stop spreading unverified reports about Covid-19 not from official sources," it said in a statement on Friday (Jan 8).
Teachers or lecturers who are coming back to Sabah and Sarawak from will have to undergo a Covid-19 swab test before schools reopen, says Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
The Senior Minister (Security) said this applies to teachers returning to schools and educational institutions in Sabah and Sarawak from Peninsular Malaysia or Labuan.
The costs of the screening will be borne by the government, he added.
As Covid-19 cases continue to soar again here and nationwide, Sabah police are prepared to enforce another inter-district travel ban in the event this was restored.
Sabah police commissioner Datuk Hazani Ghazali said that the police have issued a circular to district police chiefs notifying them of the possibility.
“Any directive will come from the National Security Council. But the police have to be prepared to act quickly in case it does,” he said.
Initially reluctant to move to temporary relief centres (PPS) due to the spread of Covid-19, now flood victims here can breathe a sigh of relief with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) implemented at the centre.
One of them, Siani Lamani, 57, from Kampung Bakalau, who was transferred to the PPS in Dewan Mohd Dun Banir here said that SOPs such as maintaining cleanliness have always been practiced by evacuees.
“Despite my concern over Covid-19, I still moved here with my two children because I was worried about safety due to flooding. But I feel relieved with the SOPs practiced here.
Sabah Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said almost all Covid-19 clusters in Sabah was due to social gatherings.
Masidi, who is also the official spokesperson for Covid-19 in Sabah, advised the public to reduce social activities to avoid an increase in the number of Covid-19 cases in the state.
“We see the increase in Covid-19 cases in Sabah due to social activities or widespread community transmission during gatherings.
The Sabah Health Department is doing its best in handling Covid-19 cases in the state.
State Covid-19 spokesperson Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said within a day after a person tested positive, the department would immediately contact and bring them to the hospital or a low-risk treatment centre.
"The department has also worked with the logistics unit of Sabah Covid-19 Disaster Management Committee to provide 24-hour service to arrange transportation for identified patients.
"Patients who lodged complaints on the delay are likely isolated cases which could be due to inaccurate addresses or uncontactable phone numbers.
As cases from community infections continue to soar in Sabah as well as nationally, the state may consider limiting social gatherings ahead of Chinese New Year.
Sabah’s Covid-19 spokesman Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said that the state would continue to keep all options open, including tightening standard operating procedures (SOP) for social gatherings and interstate or district travel, depending on the virus infection trend.
“With Chinese New Year coming up, we are looking at all the options. As much as we want to allow freedoms, we have to make decisions based on the numbers and recommendations that the Health Department makes.