KLANG: Eight officers will be deployed to Wuhan, China to escort Malaysians there back home, says the Deputy Prime Minister.
They comprise six from the Health Ministry, one from the National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma) and one from the Foreign Ministry.
Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (pic) said a total of 132 people had registered with the Malaysian embassy in China to return home, out of whom 108 are Malaysian citizens.
“The 24 people who are non-Malaysians are the spouses and children of the Malaysians who will be coming back,’’ Dr Wan Azizah told reporters after attending the Klang Hokkien Association’s Chinese New Year open house celebrations here Sunday (Feb 2).
She added that those who will be allowed to return are those found to be healthy in the exit screening conducted at the airport in Wuhan pending departure.
The eight officials are in addition to six officers from the Malaysian embassy who reportedly arrived in Wuhan earlier Sunday.
According to Dr Wan Azizah, there were negotiations between the Foreign Ministry and the Chinese government following the Cabinet’s decision to bring Malaysians back home, given the China’s lockdown of the novel coronavirus afflicted district.
The negotiations also involved Nadma and AirAsia, which will be flying the Malaysians and their family members home.
In a statement, Nadma said that an aircraft belonging to AirAsia, manned by a 12-member crew as well as bearing items such as masks, gloves and edibles, will be deployed to bring the 132 people back.
AirAsia has scheduled the flight for tomorrow (Feb 3), but said it was subject to the Chinese government’s approval.
Dr Wan Azizah said once the entourage touches down in KL International Airport, another screening will be conducted.
Those who are healthy will be brought to a quarantine centre where they will be monitored for a fortnight.
She added that arrangements have also been made to attend to those who show symptoms upon their arrival in Malaysia.
“We have set up an ICU (intensive care unit) so that they will be isolated and won’t pose a danger to other Malaysians, especially to the front-liners,” she said.