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Sri Lanka Coronavirus cluster tops 2000, KEPZ factories reach 170 Covid-19 cases

ECONOMYNEX T – Sri Lanka’s expanding Minuwangoda Coronavirus cluster reached 2014 on October 16 with 115 cases confirmed during the day, the state information office said while Covid-19 cases at an export industrial zone topped 170, health inspectors said.

More cases were found in the capital Colombo over the last two days, health officials said.

Authorities had found two dockyard workers at the Port, and 50 families at a port staff housing complex in Bloemendal had been isolated, Ruwan Wijayamuni, the chief medical officer of the Colombo Municipal Council said.

The second dock worker had tested positive after travelling to Galle, where he had visited a supermarket. He had done a PCR test after learning that his friend had been confirmed.

In the 4th Cross Street in Colombo Fort a businessman and his daughter were confirmed.

The Municipality had also tested the Mayor, members and municipal workers, who had turned out negative following a confirmed staff members at a unit earlier i
n the week on a random test, report said.

Kuliyapitiya Hospital had closed two wards and its Intensive Care Unit after a patient was confirmed.

Sri Lanka’s anti-Covid operations centre said movements have been restricted in several areas following the incident.

An infected patient had been at a wedding linked to a Brandix employee where the groom had been infected and the person had also attended at Church service in the Meegahakotuwa area where there had been about 50 persons.

Health officials had said that all confirmed cases so far had some link to the Minuwangoda factory, though initially people may not know the link, especially if they were third level contacts.

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The Minuwangoda factory cluster is believed to data back to at least September 23 or September 15, Sri Lanka’s anti-Covid Task Force head General Shavendra Silva had said.

Coronavirus had also spread to factories in the Katunayake and export processing zone and several other factories where authorities are conducting tests.

The Vice President of Sri Lanka’s Public Health Inspectors Union K U T Kulathilake told reporters that over 170 cases had been confirmed in factories so far with 45 new ones coming yesterday.

The Director General of the Board of Investment Sanjaya Mohottala had said that over 7,000 tests had been carried over the week.

Over 400 tests had been done on Saturday, Kulathilake said.

Sri Lanka’s Anti-Covid centre said 121 new cases were confirmed by late Saturday including a one returnee from the UAE and South Africa who were in quarantine.

Sri Lanka’s total cases had reached 5,475, the health ministry said with 13 deaths.
(Colombo/Oct17/2020)