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Malaysia searches for 400 workers who fled district under lockdown

KUALA LUMPUR : Malaysian authorities announced several days ago that the Medan 88 area in Selangor's Sepang district would be placed under stricter coronavirus curbs.

The result: 400 residents, believed to be workers, fled the district near the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, local media said yesterday.

Under the enhanced curbs, barbed wires are placed around a targeted area to prevent people from entering or leaving for 14 days. Health checks on every resident will be conducted, and packets of food and other essentials are sent to them.

Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said some of these workers were bussed out.

"We were told that some employers had used buses to take their workers out of the place. The police will track the employers and find the workers.

"We have also asked the police to take action against the employers for taking their workers out of the enhanced movement control order (MCO) area," he said.

Earlier yesterday, Sepang district disaster management committee chairman Mohamad Zain A. Hamid said those who did not return home were detected following interviews with residents who said their housemates or family members did not return as soon as they found out the area would be placed under enhanced MCO.

He said: "The police will detect them through the MySejahtera registrations which they made or manual registrations at shops or premises visited in the area."

Malaysia's Health Ministry reported 919 cases yesterday, raising the total to 43,791.

There was one death, taking the toll to 303.

Meanwhile Indonesia reported 4,173 cases yesterday, taking its total to 452,291.

There were 97 more deaths, taking the total to 14,933.

The Philippines reported 1,407 new infections and 11 more deaths, the lowest daily increase in fatalities in nearly three months. Total cases rose to 402,820 while deaths reached 7,721.- THE STAR, REUTERS

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