Benteng Lahad Datu cluster spikes again with 62 new cases

PUTRAJAYA: The Benteng Lahad Datu (LD) cluster in Sabah continues to see a spike in Covid-19 cases on Tuesday (Sept 8), with 62 new cases confirmed.

These cases made up the bulk of the 100 new cases reported in Malaysia, and the Benteng LD cluster is now the biggest active cluster in the country with 128 cases in the districts of Tawau and Lahad Datu.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the 62 new cases were all inmates and detainees.

“Of the 62,37 are from the Lahad Datu police headquarters lock-up, while 25 are from the Tawau prison.

“The Health Ministry has so far screened 431 individuals at the Lahad Datu lock-up, of which 87 individuals have tested positive so far. Another 132 have tested negative and there are still 212 people who have yet to get their results.

“In Tawau, we have screened 1,579 individuals and 41 have tested positive so far. Another 425 have tested negative, while some 1,113 are still awaiting for their results, ” said Dr Noor Hisham at the ministry’s Covid-19 press conference.

In total, 65 individuals under the cluster are foreigners and 53 Malaysians.

Despite the sudden spike in cases brought by the cluster, Dr Noor Hisham said the cases were “under control” as the transmissions were not spread in the community.

“As of now, the cases are found within the Lahad Datu police headquarters’ lock-up and the Tawau prison.

"The cases are under control as they are not in the community.

“This is similar to when we had hundreds of cases at the Bukit Jalil Immigraiton detention depot (DTI). The cases were controlled and not in the community, ” said Dr Noor Hisham.

The Benteng LD cluster was first detected on Sept 1 after two illegal immigrants from the Philippines were caught by the authorities under the “Ops Benteng” mission, a joint operation by the police, Armed Forces and other agencies to catch undocumented foreigners.

The first cases were found following a Covid-19 screening conducted on detainees at the Lahad Datu police headquarters.

The cases spread to the Tawau prison some 150km away after some of the detainees who had a travel history to Lahad Datu infected other inmates there.

Meanwhile, Dr Noor Hisham announced that the Bukit Jalil DTI cluster has been declared by the ministry to have ended after no new cases were recorded over a prolonged period.

In total, the cluster had 653 confirmed cases involving mostly detainees and a few staff of the detention centre.

One person, an Indian national, had died under the cluster.

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 18
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3

Did you find this article insightful?


92% readers found this article insightful

Next In Nation

Condition of GOF cop shot by smugglers improving, says Penang police chief
Covid-19: Uncle Don's Restaurants urges customers to undergo testing after employee tested positive
Five food handlers in Sibu fined for recovery MCO violations
Recruit more Bersatu members before GE15, says Women chief
Perak govt allocates RM2.95mil for flood relief aid
EPF: Employees share of statutory contribution to be reduced to 9% in 2021
Man killed in accident near Sibu after truck rams into tree
Bersatu to hold third AGM virtually
Party's over: Cops break up private party, arrest 19 in Serdang
Jawi: Nikah ceremonies allowed at all mosques not in red zones from Dec 1

Stories You'll Enjoy