Nothing wrong with disinfecting public areas, says Zuraida

Alam Flora and Fire and Rescue Department personnel disinfect a bus stop in Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur, on Tuesday.

PETALING JAYA: Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin has hit back at claims that disinfecting public areas is ineffective in preventing the spread of Covid-19.

Zuraida led a disinfection operation at a wet market in Petaling Jaya on Monday and was criticised for disinfecting roads and curbs as opposed to surfaces that people come into direct contact with.

Speaking to TV AlHijrah today, she said that spraying public areas was a necessary precaution as there is a lack of information as to how Covid-19 is spread.

“We still do not know how the coronavirus spreads,” she said.

“Some people say from coughs, sneezes, maybe it’s airborne. So if we spray the roads, it is not an issue.

“We don’t want to miss anything … I feel it is better to be safe than to not disinfect the areas,” she added.

Two former deputy health directors-general – Dr Christopher Lee and Dr Lokman Hakim Sulaiman – have said that disinfecting roads did little to curb Covid-19 and was a waste of resources.

Earlier today, health director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry will advise local authorities such as Zuraida’s ministry and Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) about its disinfection operation guidelines.