KUCHING: Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg has urged the people in the state to take the standard operating procedures (SOP) seriously, especially during this festive season, to prevent the second wave of COVID-19 outbreak.
Abang Johari, in his message in conjunction with Aidifitri celebration, said Muslims in Sarawak, similar to other Muslims all over the world, will be celebrating the Aidilfitri tomorrow, to mark the end of the Ramadan month.
However, the COVID-19 outbreak has placed everyone in extraordinary circumstances and they have to comply with stipulated SOP to prevent the spread of the virus infection, he said.
“The atmosphere of Aidilfitri this time around is very different from what we have been practicing all this while. We are not allowed in the mosque to perform the Aidilfitri prayers, it is also not advisable to visit relatives and families in large numbers except on the first day, not to hold open houses, not to shake hands and we are required to maintain social distancing.
“Think of all this as a challenge and it is our collective responsibility to ensure that the COVID-19 outbreak is resolved as soon as possible,” he said.
He also thanked all Sarawakians for complying with the SOP that has been set up at business premises and workplaces after the economic sector reopened on May 12.
“By complying with the SOP, it teaches us to be patient as we have to queue up, to maintain social distancing, taking body temperature, practice hygiene, hand sanitisers and so on. I hope by complying with this, we will all be free from the COVID-19 infection,” he said.
Meanwhile, Abang Johari said the state government, concerned about the difficulties faced by the people during the Movement Control Order (MCO), has allocated RM2.6 billion under the Sarawakku Sayang special assistance or BKSS 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0 to ease the burden of the people during the period.
“The BKSS assistance programme is a short-term measure towards helping the people, businesses as well as small and medium-sized industries and as the government thinks of the long-term impact of COVID-19 on the state’s economy, several suitable programmes have also been designed to ensure the Sarawak economy continues to thrive until 2030,” he said.
At the end of the message, Abang Johari invited all Sarawakians to celebrate the auspicious Aidilfitri with a spirit of goodwill and brotherhood among the people regardless of religious differences, races and to respect each other’s beliefs and cultural practices.
“Selamat Hari Raya Aidifitri, Maaf Zahir dan Batin to all Sarawakians,” he said.