Mass COVID-19 Screening at Labuan’s Kg Saguking/Gersik Squatter Settlements

LABUAN: A mass COVID-19 active case detection (ACD) exercise started at the squatter settlements in Kampung Saguking/Gersik here today, ahead of Phase Two of the National Recovery Plan (PPN) expected to roll out for this duty-free island in early August.

The exercise is an effort of the Labuan Disaster Management Committee (LDMC) to contain the  spread of COVID-19 at the densely-populated settlements.

LDMC chairman Rithuan Ismail said the screening would be conducted in stages in view of the huge area of the squatter settlements.

“The screening will run for two days involving at least 1, 800 family members in 600 houses. It is important for us to collect samples from each family member,” he told Bernama.

Last year, the Enhanced Movement Control Order (EMCO) was imposed on these settlements from Oct 21 to Nov 3 following a spike in cases whereby a total of 8,062 residents there were affected.

We cannot afford to let those who have not been screened to work and interact with locals in the town centre, we are going all out to reduce the number of daily cases with stricter movement restrictions,” Rithuan said.

He said the screening was a continuation of the committee’s efforts after a similar exercise was conducted at the two refugee-sanctioned settlements of Kampung Muslim and Kiamsam recently.

Labuan is seeing a downward trend in the number of individuals testing positive for COVID-19, with just 22 new cases recorded today.