Why reopen red zone schools in Sarawak on March 14, others tomorrow? asks MP

Deputy Education Minister Teo Nie Ching – The Star Pix

By John Isaac

THE education ministry has been urged to explain why schools in Sarawak Covid-19 red zones have been allowed to reopen only on March 14 when those in the peninsula and Sabah will reopen tomorrow.

Former deputy education minister Teo Nie Ching said if authorities think that schools are unsafe to reopen for red zones in Sarawak, “why is it safe for us in the other parts of Malaysia?”

In a statement today, the Kulai MP said the decision by the Sarawak State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) that schools in Covid-19 red zones stay closed until March 14 is a “slap for the education ministry”.

Basically, she said, the state government is saying “I disagree with you”.

She said that according to the SDMC, the decision was made after discussions with the Sarawak health department and the ministry.

Yesterday, Sarawak recorded 255 new Covid-19 cases. In the peninsula, Johor reported 314 new cases, Selangor 862, Perak 305 and Kuala Lumpur 117. Total active cases in Sarawak stood at 2,397; Johor 2,734; Selangor 3,002; Perak 3,626 and Kuala Lumpur 2,911.

According to reports in FMT, Teo noted that Sarawak is currently under conditional movement control order (CMCO) while Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Johor and Penang are still under MCO.

“Aren’t these factors all indicators that the Covid-19 situation in Selangor, Johor, etc is also very critical? So what are the factors being used to decide that schools in Sarawak red zones stay closed until March 14, while the schools in other states’ red zones can reopen?

“What are the indicators employed to arrive at a scientific and logical conclusion that it is indeed safe to reopen schools?

“The education ministry should convince all Malaysians that their decisions are made professionally backed by proof and proper analysis and they have given equal consideration for the children in red zones outside Sarawak,” she said.