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Last Update: 7 08 2020
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Dr Yii urges MoE to delay reopening of schools for another two weeks BY ANTONIA CHIAM ON JULY 29, 2020, WEDNESDAY AT 3:38 PM
Posted on : 29 Jul 2020  Source of News: The Borneo Post

KUCHING: Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii has urged the Ministry of Education (MoE) and Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) to look into postponing the opening of schools in Kuching for another two weeks.

He said this is in view of the increasing cases of Covid-19 in Kuching and the discovery of new clusters in throughout the city.

“The recent rise in cases and with about nine active clusters around Kuching that have been identified so far, gives extra reason that the necessary precautions need to be taken to prevent the possibility of another cluster breaking out especially among our students and teachers,” he said in a Facebook post today.

Dr Yii  said it has to be done properly to avoid spreading the virus, causing a second wave just like in countries such as South Korea, France and others when there was a premature opening of schools.

“We do not want to risk another new cluster among our schools and regretting it when it is too late.

“So I do hope the Ministry of Education will take in all the necessary feedback especially from the Ministry of Health and also PIBG or School Board, in making this important decision to protect our children and future generations,” he stressed.

Dr Yii noted that even State Health director Dr Chin Zin Hing had said that the source of Covid-19 infections for the latest spike in cases has not yet been identified, and with majority of the cases being asymptomatic, there was a huge need to be cautious.

“SDMC has also recently announced extra stringent steps to curb the spread of the disease in the greater Kuching area, so in my view that should also include the postponing of school reopening in these areas.

“They should continue aggressive testing to isolate all the different active clusters and give it another two weeks for the incubation period to pass, and review that decision when it comes closer to the date,” he said.

Dr Yii pointed out that the most concerning factor are the possibilities of hidden clusters that have yet to be discovered.

The reopening of Primary One to Four classes and transition classes, Form 1 to 4, Lower Form 6 in Kuching, Padawan and the Samarahan districts in Sarawak was initially scheduled on July 22 by the Education Ministry, but was postponed to Aug 3 by SDMC following reports of local transmission cases.