MIRI: A massive clean-up campaign is underway to clear rubbish and destroy mosquito breeding grounds in two huge housing estates in Miri district hit by a dengue outbreak.
Some 16.4 tonnes of rubbish were collected over the past few days at the Taman Tunku housing estate alone in the campaign led by the Miri City Council.
Miri mayor Adam Yii said Taman Tunku and Tudan housing estates – both located about 15km from the city centre – have been declared dengue-outbreak zones.
Both have a combined population of about 120,000 residents.
"The Health Department has confirmed that there is already one death in Taman Tunku due to dengue fever.
"There are already 248 confirmed dengue cases in Miri district. The situation is becoming alarming.
"The city council is going all out to seek public cooperation to clean up the city, especially the two outbreak areas of Taman Tunku and Tudan," Yii told reporters here on Tuesday (Oct 8).
He said mosquito-breeding grounds were caused by indiscriminate rubbish dumping and clogged drains.
Yii said gotong-royong campaigns were being organised by residents' groups and community bodies.
A 68-year-old man from Taman Tunku was confirmed as the first dengue fatality in Miri this year.
State Health Department director Dr Jamilah Hashim had confirmed that the man's death on Sept 22 was due to the mosquito-borne disease.
The man was admitted to Miri Hospital in the middle of last month after being suspected of contracting the disease.