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Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr George Chan Hong Nam has instructed the state Health Department to prepare the masks to be given out at the village main entrance during the three nightly concerts.

Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr George Chan Hong Nam said this was important to minimise the risks of Influenza A(H1N1).

“The flu is very contagious although the virus is quite mild,” he told reporters at his office at Wisma Bapa Malaysia here Friday.

Dr Chan said that a 22-year-old female clerk who returned from Bangkok on Tuesday was the seventh person in the state to have contracted A(H1N1). She was admitted to the Sarawak General Hospital isolation ward on Friday.

He said the woman’s brother who was travelling with her tested negative for the virus.

Dr Chan said the three-day music festival would go on as planned next Friday. It is expected to attract some 20,000 concert goers. More than half of the 22,000 fans at last year’s event were non-Sarawakians.

Dr Chan said all concert-goers would be given face masks and would be required to wash their hands before entering the festival venue.