Lahad Datu Lockup Cluster Racks Up 50 New Covid-19 Cases

MOH reported 62 new Covid-19 cases today (56 local transmissions), the highest daily tally since the implementation of RMCO.

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 7 — The Lahad Datu police lock-up cluster recorded a whopping 50 new Covid-19 cases today, comprising 43 cases at the district police headquarters and seven in Tawau Prison.

According to the Ministry of Health (MOH), the Benteng LD cluster in Sabah has now recorded a total of 66 positive Covid-19 cases, comprising 64 among prisoners and two among a prison officer and their niece or nephew, with three generations of spread (meaning one person infected another, who infected another).

The 66 Covid-19 cases detected so far in the Benteng LD cluster comprised 30 Malaysians (45.5 per cent) and 36 foreigners (54.5 per cent).

The Benteng LD cluster was first identified on September 1 when two undocumented immigrants were held at the Lahad Datu district police headquarters lockup on August 24, who later tested positive for coronavirus on August 31.

A total of 1,404 individuals have been screened among prisoners, prison staff, family members of staff and prisoners, police officers, and other government agency officers in this cluster that has spread across two districts in Sabah — Lahad Datu and Tawau.

In Lahad Datu, among the 420 people screened, 50 individuals have tested positive, 337 tested negative, while 33 individuals are still waiting for their results.

In Tawau, among the 984 individuals that have been screened, 16 individuals have tested positive, 230 individuals tested negative while 738 individuals are still waiting for their results.

A Tawau prison officer, who was a football referee for a football match at Tawau prison and MPT stadium, was also found to be Covid-19 positive. Bernama reported yesterday that the district health office has issued a notice requesting all players, spectators and those involved in the nine-a-side football competition to screen for Covid-19.

According to MOH’s risk analysis, the tight and narrow lockup space led to the outbreak in this cluster. It was found that physical distancing was difficult to be practiced in prison.

Another positive coronavirus case was detected in Sabah during the screening of a severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) patient.

A new coronavirus cluster dubbed Sungai cluster was reported at a medical centre in Kedah today. The index case of this cluster was a health care worker at the medical centre.

The individual was ill since August 30, said MOH, but did not seek medical attention. On September 5, a screening was conducted and the individual was then detected positive with Covid-19.

The second case from this cluster is also a health care worker who was a close contact to the index case.

Currently, MOH is carrying out active case detection and close contact screening whereby as of today, a total of 57 people have been screened, out of which two individuals have tested positive, while 55 individuals are still waiting for their results.

Two additional cases were also detected in Kedah, one from the Telaga cluster and one from a symptomatic screening at a dental clinic in Alor Setar.

Another locally transmitted case was reported in Penang during close contact screening of Patient 9,397.

MOH reported 62 new Covid-19 cases today, the highest daily tally since the implementation of the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) on June 10, comprising 56 locally transmitted cases among 30 Malaysians and 26 foreigners, and six imported cases.

The six imported cases involved two Malaysians and four foreigners who returned from Turkey (two cases in Kuala Lumpur), Bangladesh (one case in Kuala Lumpur and one case in Selangor), Indonesia (once case in Kuala Lumpur), and Egypt (one case in Selangor).

MOH reported 207 active Covid-19 cases with six patients in the intensive care unit (ICU), including four of them on ventilator support.

Nine patients have been discharged from the hospital today, bringing the cumulative recovered Covid-19 cases to 9,124.

The death toll remains at 128 as no new casualties were recorded today.

MOH also announced that four clusters have officially ended as of today — the person-under-investigation (PUI) Sivagangga cluster, Muda cluster, Meranti cluster, and Kurau cluster.

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