Current Affairs, National

Chong Chieng Jen: Sarawakians adhere to the 14-day quarantine SOP, so will I

Press Statement
21st December

Notwithstanding that “exemption” has been granted to me by the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) upon my return from Kuala Lumpur to Kuching on 19-12-2020, I will still stay at home for the 14 days following my arrival from Kuala Lumpur, as what most Sarawakians are subject to under SDMC’s Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and minimise contact with the public.

During this period, I will work from home and will still be contactable via my handphone. For matters that require physical appearance and on-the-ground services, my assistants, Michael Kong, Sim Kiat Leng, Abdul Aziz Isa, Christina Chiew, Julian Tan, and Ting Kee Kai will be able to help.

To put the record straight, I did not apply for “exemption” but merely applied for the “Permit to Enter Sarawak”, like all ordinary Sarawakians returning to Sarawak.

The first application for “Permit to Enter Sarawak” was submitted on 18-12-2020 together with both the Covid-19 test results done on 11/12 and 17/12 in Parliament and Parliament’s notice of meeting. On the same day, I received a “14-day Quarantine Order”.

Thus, I prepared myself to be hotel-quarantined for the next 14 days.

Upon my arrival at the Kuching International Airport, the APM officers were surprised to see me with the “14-day Quarantine Order” and thus asked me to apply again for the “Permit to Enter Sarawak” through the SDMC website which I did. The same set of documents was submitted.

About an hour later, as I was waiting for the bus to take all of us from the same flight to the designated hotel, I received an email from SDMC that an “exemption” had been granted to me. I then showed the APM officers on duty the email, whereupon my quarantine wristband was removed and I was asked to go home with no requirement to be quarantined.

This is what actually happened on 19-12-2020 and I hope that the SUPP, without knowing the facts of the matter, will stop twisting facts and playing their smear game.

Unlike the GPS Members of Parliament, I did not write in specifically to the chairman of SDMC to ask for “exemption” of quarantine upon return to Sarawak. I don’t believe in Ministers and Members of Parliament being treated differently from the people whom they represent, especially for the purpose of containing a pandemic.

Therefore, despite having the “exemption”, I will remain at home and work from home, and reduce contact with the public during this 14-day period.

Meanwhile, I wish to express thanks to the Ministry of Health and APM personnel at the Kuching Airport for their effectiveness and courteous manner in carrying out their tasks.

Chong Chieng Jen
DAP Sarawak Chairman
MP for Stampin

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