SIBU (Feb 8): Sibu Rural District Council (SRDC) chairman Sempurai Petrus Ngelai has clarified that there will be no ‘lockdown’ in Sibujaya as the two-week enforcement of the enhanced standard operating procedure (SOP) beginning tomorrow is targeted at reducing the traffic movement due to high cases of Covid-19 in the township.
He made this clarification in response to a viral information on social media today claiming that the township of about 30,000 will be placed under a ‘lockdown’ from tomorrow and even those with police permits will not be permitted to travel out of the township.
“There is no lockdown in Sibujaya as residents there having police permit can still travel in and out of the township. There is no issue about that at all. The enhanced SOP is to restrict traffic movement in a bid to curb the spread of Covid-19 in this township.
“Additionally, only businesses dealing with food, pharmacies, clinics, banks and petrol stations are allowed to operate in Sibujaya, while others even though they are categorised under essential services, they are not permitted to operate,” Sempurai told The Borneo Post when contacted.
He also advised Sibujaya residents to only buy the necessities in the township instead of taking the hassle to travel to the town centre.
As for the non residents of Sibujaya wishing to travel to the township, Sempurai said he would leave it the discretion of the police.
He took the opportunity to appeal to netizens not to post any ‘mischievous’ or unfounded information that could trigger panic and fear among members of the public during this challenging time.
He also advised all Sibujaya residents to give their full cooperation and be patient with the restrictions following the enforcement of the the enhanced SOP enforced starting from tomorrow.
“We hope that with the enhanced SOP, we can break the chain of infection. I also urge all the residents to apply strict personal hygiene like washing your hands regularly or use hand sanitiser, and when you going out together with face mask.
“Only go out when necessary to get your food supply or other important things, otherwise just stay at home. For those staying at the flats, please stay at your own unit and avoid any social gatherings at the moment.”
He called on those who are working and have working permits to travel out to the town centre to plan their journey ahead to avoid traffic jam at the police check point at the main entrance of Sibujaya.
“We are aware that there are a lot of reports and complaints about traffic congestion at this checkpoint during the early morning and afternoon peak hours.
“We hope that with the enhanced SOP, the number of traffic will be reduced. Council is getting in touch with the police to reduce the congestion at the check point. The key thing is, we all need to be patient and comply with SOP, as there is no other way to flatten the infection curve,” Sempurai emphasised.