PBDS president calls for strict restrictions for travellers from China

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUCHING, Jan 3 — Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) president Bobby William today called for stringent restrictions to be imposed on foreign travellers, especially from China, to prevent a repeat of the shutdowns resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic in Malaysia.

He said the pandemic caused untold suffering to the people in Malaysia, including Sarawak, many of whom lost their jobs and saw businesses closed when the movement control order (MCO) was imposed that kept people indoors.

“Economic and social activities have yet to fully recover now from the MCO,” Bobby said when asked to comment on a Facebook post by Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing yesterday.

“It is not only Malaysia that is on vigilance on travellers from China, but also many countries around the world,” he said.

He said he knows tourists from China consider Malaysia as one of their favourite destinations, adding that the health and safety of Malaysians must come first over tourism dollars.

Bobby recalled Tiong was particularly harsh towards the Health director-general Tan Sri Noor Hisham Abdullah in handling the Covid-19 pandemic.

“He even demanded Dr Noor Hisham be replaced and questioned then Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin’s strategy in combating the pandemic,” he said.

Bobby reminded the federal government that two main Covid-19 variants found spreading rapidly in China, namely BA.5.2 and BF.7, have been detected in Malaysia.

He said Dr Noor Hisham had said as of Dec 31, there were 4,148 BA.5.2 cases and three BF.7 cases in the country.

Separately, human rights activist Peter John Jaban concurred with Bobby, saying that travellers from China must be subjected to strict restrictions before they are allowed to enter Sarawak.

He said they must undergo Covid-19 test and the result must be negative at least two days before they arrive in the country, adding that they must provide proof of the negative results.

“The same procedure should also apply to tourists from other countries. We need to protect ourselves from Covid-19 infections,” he said.

He said he does not wish to remind the government, especially the tourism minister, of the suffering and hardships caused by the pandemic from early 2020 until early last year.

Tiong, on his Facebook page, noted that media reports had not been friendly with the Chinese government regarding the opening of its border gates for its citizens to travel abroad soon.

He said the people need to be mindful in giving their views before they understand the real situation of what is happening.