Ho Choi Building in Yuen Long and Majestic House in Tsim Sha Tsui were put under coronavirus lockdowns on Monday evening following outbreaks. Officials are seeking to test all residents by 2am on Tuesday with both lockdowns expected to be lifted by 7am.

Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung said on Monday that the city will see more coronavirus lockdowns in the run-up to next Thursday.

Photo: GovHK.

“Depending on the pandemic, it is expected that there may be lockdowns on the scale of the earlier operations in North Point and Kwun Tong in different districts in Hong Kong every day, aiming to reach community clearing at the shortest time,” said Cheung.

Cheung also said on Monday that there was “no room to relax social distancing measures” as the government extended the coronavirus social distancing rules until after the Lunar New Year holidays.

The ban on dine-in services in restaurants after 6pm, the group gathering ban on more than two people, and the mask-wearing rule would be extended to February 17. However, the government will open up some outdoor sports facilities which involve less physical contact.

Cheung announced that residential buildings where one coronavirus infection with unknown origins was recorded, or with sewage samples that tested positive for Covid-19, would be put under a compulsory testing order.

Chief Secretary for Administration Matthew Cheung. File photo: GovHK.

Workplaces with two unrelated cases will be ordered to undergo mandatory testing, Cheung added. The government has also included those who live with close contacts of confirmed cases in compulsory testing orders.

Laguna lockdown

During the lockdown in Laguna City on Sunday night, as Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan visited the site, a woman shouted “you attracted the reporters here, I feel very unsafe, get out!”

A government official was also attacked during the lockdown that night.

In a statement on Monday, Chief Executive Carrie Lam thanked those who underwent testing and said she hoped that members of public would fully cooperate, as she condemned the violent behaviour against the official: “All the compulsory measures taken by the Government amid the epidemic are necessary and with legal basis. It is an offence to breach the rules and penalties are clear,” said Lam in the statement.

Laguna City lockdown. Photo: StudioIncendo.

“Regardless of whether members of the public are required to undergo compulsory virus tests or commercial or personal activities are subject to restriction, we hope that we can have the full co-operation of the public in order to achieve the expected results.”

“Members of the public may raise their questions or express their views through various means. They should not pick on the working staff or even resort to violence,” the statement read.

Hong Kong recorded 34 coronavirus infections on Monday, of which 29 were locally transmitted cases, and eight of the cases had unknown origins. The death toll stands at 182 as of Monday evening.

Candice Chau

Candice is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. She previously worked as a researcher at a local think tank. She has a BSocSc in Politics and International Relations from the University of Manchester and a MSc in International Political Economy from London School of Economics.