S'wak bus companies must ensure foreign workers have valid identification

SIBU: All regional or express bus companies operating in Sarawak must strictly comply with a new directive with regard to passengers who are foreign workers.

The State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC), in a statement on Saturday (Dec 19), said the decision was made at its meeting on Dec 18 with the aim of curbing the spread of Covid-19.

It said bus companies must make sure that foreign workers purchasing bus tickets to travel within Sarawak must produce valid passports before any tickets could be issued to them.

These companies must also ensure that their bus drivers do not pick up any passengers, especially foreign workers, along the bus journey.

"The relevant enforcement agencies such as the Immigration Department, police and Road Transport Department (JPJ) have been asked to randomly carry out checks on the buses to detect illegal foreign workers in the state," it added.

The committee warned that stern action and severe penalties would be imposed on the bus companies if their buses were caught ferrying illegal workers.

"We need full cooperation of all regional and express bus companies to take immediate action," the committee added.

On Dec 16, police in Sibu received a report that four Indonesian women who tested Covid-19 positive had fled to Entikong in Indonesia via the Sibu-Serian bus.

The women had come here from Bintulu to search for work. Their agent then brought them to a private medical specialist centre for a swab test to determine their health status.

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