The Ministry of Health has identified four more confirmed COVID-19 cases today, recording a total of 54 cases in the sultanate.
This new development was announced by Health Minister Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Md Isham Hj Jaafar in a press conference held at the Ministry of Health’s Al-Afiah Hall early this evening.
The session was also joined by Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah, Minister of Religious Affairs YB Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Awang Badaruddin, Minister of Development YB Dato Seri Setia Hj Suhaimi Hj Gafar, Deputy State Mufti Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Japar Haji Mat Dain @ Maidin and Minister of Transport and Infocommunications YB Dato Seri Setia Abdul Mutalib.
Three of the cases are those categorised as the second generation of the tabligh cluster in Kuala Lumpur who are those indirectly infected by the tabligh congregants but from confirmed cases that are related to the first tabligh cluster.
Meanwhile, the remaining case is imported.
- Case 51 is 29 years old and the colleague of Case 37 where the latter belongs to the first tabligh cluster. The former has no travelling history abroad and did not experience any signs of infection.
- Case 52 is a 27-year-old female who is the wife of Case 43. Her husband was one of those from the first generation of tabligh cluster. She did not have any travel history abroad and began coughing, flu, headache and fatigue on March 12.
- Case 53 is a British national who has a family living in Brunei. He arrived in the sultanate on March 9 onboard Royal Brunei Airline’s flight BI004. Prior to arrival, he went to Switzerland and several cities in the United Kingdom. He started to have fever, sore throat, cough, flu and breathing difficulties on March 14.
- Case 54, aged 39 is a contact of Case 30 who belongs to the first tabligh cluster. The former did not have any travelling history abroad and began to have a cough and sore throat on March 12.
“All of the cases now are treated at the National Isolation Centre. One of them is in a critical condition who needs breathing machine and currently at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU),” the health minister said, adding two cases need close monitoring while the rest are well and stable.
The ministry is calling all potential blood donors to donate at the Blood Bank of Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha Hospital. Call 2242424 ext 5745 to set an appointment.
To date, 1,013 people have been quarantined under the Infectious Disease Act (Chapter 204) and the ministry currently actively investigating contacts of each case.
Some 1,312 laboratory tests have been carried out for COVID-19 since January this year.
For further information and latest developments, visit MoH’s website at www.moh.gov.bn or call its 24-hour Health Advice Line 148.
Travel ban and shorter control posts hours
In light of the outbreak and to contain the further spread of the virus, all citizens and residents holding Brunei identification cards are prohibited from exiting the sultanate starting March 16.
Further information can be obtained from 223592 or 2235953 from 7.45am until 4.30pm during working hours only.
Citizens and residents can also opt to fill in Form A for Brunei identification cardholders who are not civil servants and members of statutory bodies; Form B is for civil servants and members of statutory bodies and; Form C is for Overseas Travel Application for Companies.
The ministry also announced that operating hours of immigration control posts nationwide via land will be shortened by two hours starting from 6am to 10pm, effective on March 16.
These include Kuala Lurah Temporary Immigration Control Post, Ujung Jalan Control and Inspection Complex, Labu Temporary Immigration Control Post and Sungai Tujoh Immigration Control Post.
Temporary opening of Temburong Bridge
The finance minister YB Dato Hj Amin Liew also announced the opening of the sultanate’s mega bridge starting March 17 from 6am until 10pm daily, for the ease of commuters between Brunei – Muara and Temburong districts.
“Physical works on the bridge have been completed and the management and maintenance of the infrastructure have been handed over to the Public Works Department. Currently, installation of CCTVs and cables are ongoing (on the bridge) which is slated to complete by end of April,” he said.
He added that only Brunei registered vehicles for classes I, II, IV and VI are allowed to use the bridge.
“Commercial vehicles registered in Brunei for class V, permission needs to be applied from the Bridge Maintenance Office (BMO),” said the minister.
Meanwhile, passenger boat services from Brunei-Muara to Temburong will operate as usual with limited passengers.
Members of the public can contact the department at Darussalam Line 123, Livechat Facebook ‘Jabatan Kerja Raya’ or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN