Hundreds turn up to renew passes as Sabah reopens

Migrants wait their turn to renew their IMM13 papers at Wisma Dang Bandang. Police had to step in to control
the crowd rushing into the building earlier.

KOTA KINABALU: At least two overcrowding incidents were recorded today as many Sabahans here and those from the surrounding West Coast districts returned to work with restrictions relaxed under the movement control order.

Hundreds of migrants turned up at the government offices at Wisma Dang Bandang to renew their IMM13 passes. A migrant, Salim, said many people did not obey the social distancing rule as they rushed into the building when the Immigration office opened.

Police arrived 45 minutes later to control the crowd, and enforce the distancing rule, he said.

“Everyone had been pushed out of the gates as the policemen shut the gates. Some were desperate as their IMM13 had expired four months ago. A friend of mine could not renew his IMM13 because of the MCO,” he told FMT.

Fishermen and buyers going through the night’s catch at the Kota Kinabalu jetty at about 6.30am today.

As many as 150 migrants were seen crowding the building earlier.

Another incident of overcrowding took place at the Safma jetty during the landing of fish early in the morning. State authorities stepped in for crowd control.

Some restaurants in Kapayan and Penampang reopened for dine-in customers, but almost all food operators in Kota Kinabalu maintained the take-away procedure.

Almost all malls and also private offices also had security guards screening the temperature and their details recorded before and after they left the office.

A scene at the southbound Kota Kinabalu bus terminal near Inanam.

The majority of hotels in the city still remain closed but those opened still keep health protocols by recording those who entered their premises.

Sabah Chief Minister Shafie Apdal announced over the weekend the reopening of the construction, forestry, restaurants, malls, professional services offices, public parks, workshops, service stations, auto sales companies and more under Phase 5 of the MCO.

He also called for the reopening of local tourism and urged airlines to increase the frequency of flights from Peninsular Malaysia to the state.

A circular released by the State Health Department on May 9 to district health officers and airports stated that all passengers from Peninsular Malaysia would be screened and ordered to undergo home quarantine, while those who had travelled out of the country would be quarantined at designated centres.

People crossing the street to get to the popular Center Point mall this morning.

State Health Director Christina Rundi made no comment when FMT tried to verify the government circular.

Over 200 express buses are being readied for the reopening of the express bus operations to cater to the growing demand of inter-district travel. The number of passengers would be halved from 41 to 20 on each coach, said local bus express association leader, Donald Hanafi.

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