Tawau bank staff in quarantine after customer is warded

The bank in Tawau has been temporarily closed for disinfection. (Pic by SBEU)

KOTA KINABALU: Staff at a bank in Sabah’s Tawau district are worried they might have been infected with Covid-19 after receiving a visit from a customer who has tested positive for the virus.

Sabah Banking Employees Union president Margaret Chin said the 20 staff at the bank had gone for tests, which all came back negative. However, they are required to be under self-quarantine for 14 days.

“The bank is now temporarily closed for disinfection. Some of the staff had direct contact with this customer.

“We hope they will stay healthy for the duration but they are all still worried,” she told FMT.

Chin said the customer was one of the 16,000 who had attended the tabligh gathering at the Sri Petaling mosque in Kuala Lumpur at the end of last month. He had visited the bank branch at least twice last week.

“The bank staff were alarmed when they learned about the customer being warded,” she said.

Chin urged the authorities to provide personal protection equipment to workers in the essential services, such as masks and sanitisers.

“The health and wellbeing of bank staff should be prioritised. We were informed by many of our members in Sabah that they do not have masks, gloves or hand sanitisers when carrying out their duties.

Sabah Banking Employees Union president Margaret Chin.

“Not all banks have thermometers to check the temperatures of staff and customers before they enter the bank premises.

“Social distancing is also not being observed as there is no effort to control the number of customers entering the bank,” said Chin, who is also the Sabah Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) vice-chairman.

The SBEU urged the government to solve the shortage of protective equipment.

“We have a large migrant population here and we do not want to put the whole community at risk.”

Chin said they had requested that bank staff be allowed to work on shifts and that business hours be shortened.

Sabah has 119 confirmed Covid-19 cases now, an increase of 7 cases. Tawau and Lahad Datu districts have the highest number of positive cases at 32 each.