Grave concern that the Health Ministry authorities seem to have lost interest in the mounting death toll of the deadly viral epidemic

Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Tuesday):
Although the death toll of the deadly viral epidemic in Sarawak continued to mount claiming another infant yesterday, bringing to total number of victims to 31, the Health Minister and the authorities concerned seemed to have lost interest in the epidemic.

The latest 31st death in Sarawak is now relegated to very insignificant coverage in the inside pages of the newspapers, in great contrast to the front-page coverage early last month, especially when there was the fear that the deadly virus has spread to Peninsular Malaysia.

The University of Nebraska Medical Centre which maintains the only Internet website providing close monitoring of the deadly viral epidemic outbreak could also discern this diminished interest of the health authorities when it commented in its update posted on the Internet yesterday, where it said:

I visited the Jabatan Kesihatan Negeri Sarawak website at 1.30 p.m. today and found that it still maintains that the total number of deaths is 30, when it should be 31.

The Health Minister, Datuk Chua Jui Meng had asked the people to get the latest news from the JKNS website, but it would appear that the JKNS is now giving "old" news.

The people of Sarawak and Malaysia are entitled to demand that so long as the viral epidemic poses threat to lives, the interest of the Health Ministry authorities concerned, and in particular that of the Health Minister, Datuk Chua Jui Meng, should not be diminished in any manner until the deadly viral epidemic is finally brought under control.


*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong