MIRI: Sarawak has imposed an immediate ban on the recruitment of workers from China.
The order was issued by the state disaster relief management committee which held a meeting in Kuching yesterday to discuss the novel coronavirus.
The committee also imposed a mandatory declaration of travel destinations for all those entering the state.
A notice of the decision by the committee was posted in the websites of various enforcement agencies.
The committee met to discuss the case of a 25-year-old woman from China who works for a foreign industrial plant in Bintulu district in northern Sarawak. She has been hospitalised for flu-like symptoms after returning from a trip to Wuhan, China.
The woman, from the province of Hubei, had been working for the energy-production plant in Bintulu for the past two years.
On Jan 11, she went to Wuhan for a work-related trip and came back to Sarawak on Jan 16 aboard a Wuhan-Kota Kinabalu-Bintulu flight.
Yesterday, she showed symptoms of flu and was warded in Bintulu Hospital.
At 4.15pm yesterday, the Bintulu police sent a team of officers to the hospital to find out more about the woman after a social media posting alleged that she was a coronavirus carrier.
The hospital medical team had extracted samples of her blood and sent them to the Health Ministry.
So far, there is no confirmation that she has been infected by the virus.
This is the first time a China national in Sarawak is suspected to be infected.
Sarawak has many China nationals working in the state.
There are also many restaurants and eateries in big cities and towns in Sarawak that are operated by China nationals.
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