Malaysia recorded an abnormal increase in Covid-19 cases today of 172, the first time after weeks of double-digit reports, however the Director General of Ministry of Health, Datuk Dr. Noor Hisham has advised citizens not to be alarmed.
According to Datuk Dr. Noor Hisham, out of the 172, 5 were from import cases and 167 were local transmission out of which 159 were from the immigration detention depot. With a new cluster detected in Sepang yesterday, a spike in cases was expected with possible high-transmission in these places. This is the second large cluster discovered just 2 weeks after Bukit Jalil reported outbreak of Covid-19 cases last week.
Local community cases are still low in the single digits, and in his press briefing, the DG urged Malaysians to not discriminate foreigners as the battle against the virus affects everyone.
“Covid-19 does not see race, age, religion or status, its invisible and could infect anyone regardless, so lets not discriminate when the detainees get infected.”
On worries of outbreak affecting the community outside the depot, Security Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob informed that the premise is contained and no is allowed to leave without screening. Additional precautions are under way to isolate all those infected to another location and mass-screening for all detention centers are currently underway.
Malaysia is seeing rise in cases among the illegal migrants in the past couple of weeks, a worrying trend if anything to go by, as our neighbour, Singapore experienced a similar situation. Out of its 20,000 odd cases, 95% are from migrant workers which the nation had failed to address in the early days. Authorities in Malaysia need to act quickly to prevent a Singapore-like spread.