KUCHING: Tourism and other events in Sarawak, including the Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF), have been postponed in view of the Covid-19 situation.
State Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, who is also Sarawak Youth and Sports Minister, said this decision was made after the state disaster management committee issued a directive on Friday (March 13) that all public events involving more than 250 people should be put on hold.
"Since my ministries have several events that will be held in the next few months, we have to abide with this directive and we are postponing all these events until further notice.
"Those events will not be cancelled but are being postponed until the situation gets better. The difficult decision has to be made as public health in Sarawak is our top priority during this global pandemic," he told a press conference here.
The state disaster management committee issued the advisory after Sarawak recorded its first three cases of Covid-19.
Karim said the affected tourism events included the Asean Spartan Race next month, RWMF, Rainforest Fringe Festival, Rainforest in the City and Kuching International Bike Week, all scheduled to be held in July.
He also said over 30 business events with more than 250 participants would be postponed, including the 10th Borneo Dental Congress at the end of this month, involving about 800 participants and the 58th Lions convention in Sibu next month with some 2,000 delegates.
"My ministries will keep monitoring the situation closely. We hope the virus will subside within one or two months, but public health is of utmost importance," he said.