Sabah sites and destinations allowed to open for domestic tourism
Published on: Saturday, September 11, 2021
By: Anthea Peter
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Kota Kinabalu: Tourism sites and destinations in Sabah are now allowed to open for domestic tourism, subject to certain conditions under the National Security Council’s latest standard operating procedures (SOP) updated on Friday.

Sabah’s Covid-19 spokesperson Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said domestic tourism is only allowed within the same district or via travel bubbles on condition that tourists, tour operators and staff have been fully vaccinated and are of low-risk status on MySejahtera.

However, certain tourism activities are still not allowed, including zoos, farms, aquariums, edutainment centres, theme parks, family entertainment centres and karaoke as well as extreme and adventure activities, among others.

“Tourists are not allowed to travel out of their districts and state,” said Masidi.

Additionally, driving institutes are now allowed to operate at 80 per cent capacity with fully vaccinated staff and on appointment basis.

“Driving tests for an individual to obtain their motor vehicle driving licence will be allowed starting Sept 17, on condition that all employees, instructors and candidates have been fully vaccinated,” said Masidi.

Indoor and outdoor sports and commercial recreational facilities as well as semi-indoor swimming pools and recreational water sports premises are also allowed to operate at 60 per cent capacity but only for individual activities without any physical contact.

“The premises must operate on an appointment basis under the owner’s facilitation as walk-ins are not allowed. The operating hours are from 6am to 8pm.

“Premise owners must ensure that all staff and customers have been fully vaccinated and are of low-risk status on MySejahtera,” said Masidi, adding that gymnasiums and fitness centres are still not allowed to operate.

Masidi said the latest SOPs also permits the development and broadcast of creative content via recording or live telecast on condition that employees are fully vaccinated.

“Informative and entertainment broadcasts (recorded or live) are also permitted with the presence of a fully vaccinated audience, at 30 per cent audience capacity of the agency’s studio space.

“Creative industry filming inside and outside the studio is permitted for those fully vaccinated. Indoor and outdoor busking and hotel lounge performances are also allowed for those fully vaccinated,” he said.

He added that art exhibitions in exhibition halls, museums and art galleries are permitted on appointment basis and at 30 per cent capacity of the space, provided that employees and visitors are fully vaccinated.

Sabah recorded 2,246 cases on Friday while 28 deaths were recorded – 13 in Tawau, eight in Sandakan, three in Papar and one each in Kudat, Kota Marudu, Lahad Datu and Kota Kinabalu.

One cluster was identified in Kinabatangan, named as the Sawit Perpaduan cluster which sparked at an oil palm estate in Mukim Sukau.

“The index case is a 34-year-old male Indonesian factory working who was tested positive at the Kinabatangan Hospital on Aug 30 after experiencing symptoms on Aug 26.

“Contact screenings found 90 individuals positive among social contacts, workers and dependents,” said Masidi, adding that there are 91 cases in this cluster to date.

On Sabah’s caseload, Kota Kinabalu topped the list with 302 cases, followed by Sandakan (244), Lahad Datu (201), Tuaran (196), Penampang (149), Kota Belud (115), Papar (114) and Kinabatangan (112).  

“Cases in KK decreased by 196. Cases also dipped in Sandakan, Penampang and Tawau, however Tuaran recorded an increase of 75 caases.

“The Sawit Perpaduan Cluster in Kinabatangan caused cases in the district to spike to 112 from 46 the day earlier,” said Masidi.

He said out of the caseload, 1,149 are overdue cases from two to three days ago, 89 cases from four to five days ago and 154 from more than five days ago.

Close contacts continued to be the largest contributor with 1,247 cases (55.5 pent), while symptomatic cases accounted for 31.8 per cent of the caseload with 714 cases. 

Masidi said districts recording a substantial number of symptomatic cases include Tawau (46.3 per cent), Penampang (41.6 per cent), Sandakan (40.2 per cent) and Tuaran (22 per cent).

Of the caseload, 22 cases involved babies less than a year old, 171 involved one to five-year-olds, 451 involved six to 17-year-olds, 1,387 involved 18 to 59-year-olds, whereas 215 cases involved those aged above 60 years. 

The caseload also comprised 1,988 Malaysians and 258 non-Malaysians, 2,208 local cases and 40 imported cases, while 1,226 are unvaccinated and 782 have completed both doses.

Masidi said category two infections make up the bulk of the caseload with 1,473 cases, while 712 are in category one, four in category three, two in category four and one in category five.

Some 3,059 Covid-19 patients have been discharged from the hospital while 4,967 patients are currently receiving treatment at hospitals, low risk quarantine and treatment centres (PKRCs), prisons/temporary detention centres and private facilities.

Masidi said 187 patients are under critical care, with 126 in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU)/repurposed critical care as well as 61 in the open ward (high dependency ward (HDW)/acute cubicle), with 82 needing ventilator support.

On Sabah’s immunisation programme, Masidi said 49.5 per cent of Sabah’s adult population have been fully vaccinated, while 65.8 per cent have completed their first dose, as of Sept 9.

“100 per cent of the adult population in Beaufort and Putatan have completed at least one dose, followed by Kuala Penyu (94 per cent), Kota Kinabalu (86.7 per cent) and Sipitang (81.5 per cent),” said Masidi.

Under phase two, 9,268 individuals have received their first dose on Friday,, bringing the tally to 1,687,473 while 21,588 have received their second dose, bringing the tally to 1,247,064.

Meanwhile, Kg Kopungit in Kota Kinabalu will be placed under Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO) from Sept 12 to 25, while existing EMCOs in Kg Debut, Ranau and Kg Tindai Kolopis, Penampang will be lifted on Sept 11.


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