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Friday, January 31, 2020

We are ok, say Malaysian students in Wuhan

China has locked down several cities, including Wuhan, to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. (Bernama pic)
KUALA LUMPUR: “Families and friends in Malaysia, don’t worry. We are okay and safe here,” said Yeong Kai Yi, 26, a Malaysian student at the Central China Normal University in Wuhan, China.
However, the final-year student at the university’s School of Fine Arts said her movements and that of other students were limited to the confines of the hostel and university campus following the lockdown imposed by the Chinese government on Wuhan and several other neighbouring cities, following the outbreak of the 2019 novel coronavirus, first detected in Wuhan in December last year.
“The current situation is really a matter of concern. For the moment, to prevent getting infected, I am just staying in my room.”
She said there were only about 100 international students, including herself and two others from Malaysia, left on campus.
This follows the departure of all local students and lecturers for their respective hometowns for the semester break.
“We have all been advised to stay in our rooms and not leave the campus,” the student said.
Yeong, who is in constant contact with her family back home in Chemor, Perak, gave an assurance that university authorities were continuously monitoring the welfare of the international students.
“In case of any emergency, lecturers will accompany students to the hospital and they have also given us emergency contact numbers,” Yeong explained.
Asked about food supplies, she said there was no problem in getting food as the canteen and several shops on campus were still operational.
Meanwhile, another Malaysian in Wuhan, S Balachandar, 43, a geophysics PhD student at the China University of Geosciences, said after being house-bound for nine days, he ventured outside yesterday to nearby shops to purchase additional food supplies.
“I took a five-minute walk to check if the shops were open. Thankfully, there was a vegetable shop open, as well as a shop selling fruits and a grocery,” he said.
Balachandar, who hails from Sabak Bernam, Selangor, is staying off campus with his wife and two sons.
“We are safe and healthy, don’t worry,” he said.
Balachandar added that the Malaysian embassy in China was in constant contact with the eight Malaysian students in Wuhan, and was also undertaking efforts to send food supplies to the students in spite of the logistical challenges. - FMT

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