Close contacts of Malaysia's first Omicron case test negative for Covid-19, says Health DG

(Reuters illustration filepix by Dado Ruvic)

(Reuters illustration filepix by Dado Ruvic)

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KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 3): Seven people who were close contacts of Malaysia's first official case of the Omicron variant of Sars-CoV-2 have tested negative for Covid-19.

According to a tweet by health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah on Friday (Dec 3), the RT-PCR tests on the group — including two roommates, two students from Ghana and one student from India, a university staff member and driver — returned negative.

Meanwhile, the index case — a 19-year-old student from South Africa who is studying at a private university in Perak — had also tested negative.

"Alhamdulilah," he said.

On Friday morning, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced that Malaysia's first case of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 was detected on Thursday (Dec 2).

"The case (patient) travelled from KLIA to Ipoh using a bus specially provided by the university.

"The student has undergone compulsory quarantine at an accommodation provided by the university.

"The student is fully vaccinated [against Covid-19] and not asymptomatic,” Khairy added.

He said the student complied with pre-departure Covid-19 testing and on-arrival testing, and had been staying at home during quarantine. 

According to him, the student had arrived in Malaysia after visiting family members in South Africa on Nov 19, before the country had reported its first case of Omicron to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The WHO had designated Omicron as a variant of concern on Nov 26.