Hong Kong’s Security Bureau has said that there are partitions between communal toilet facilities at the Covid-19 quarantine centre in Tsing Yi, after photos circulating on the internet suggested otherwise.

“The [Security Bureau] strongly condemns individuals who deliberately mislead members of the public by publishing the inaccurate photo,” the government said in a statement published on Thursday evening.

Tsing Yi toilets
Toilets in Tsing Yi Covid-19 quarantine facility. Photo: GovHK.

The premises in Tsing Yi were the first to be completed among eight isolation facilities the government plans to build with assistance from the Central government.

covid covid-19 quarantine tsing yi isolation
Tsing Yi Covid-19 quarantine facility. Photo: Kyle Lam/HKFP.

Providing 3,900 beds, the facility was converted from shipping containers and is designated for Covid-19 patients with mild – or no – symptoms. Each room has three beds with no barriers between them, and patients will have to share toilets and bathrooms.

YouTube video

“The [Security Bureau] reaffirmed that although Tsing Yi community isolation facility was completed in just seven days, the pedestal and squat-type toilets inside are all independent compartments,” the statement read.

covid covid-19 quarantine tsing yi isolation
Tsing Yi Covid-19 quarantine facility. Photo: Kyle Lam/HKFP.

The Tsing Yi premises began accepting patients on Tuesday, as the city prepares for citywide compulsory testing, which the government said will take place in March in order to curb the fifth wave of Covid-19 led by the Omicron variant.

Since the beginning of the pandemic two years ago, Hong Kong has reported 350,557 infections and 1,358 deaths.

‘Adaptors are provided’

According to a video filmed by pro-Beijing outlet Speak Out HK, the quarantine facilities in Tsing Yi also had rooms with Chinese-style power sockets – different from the type used in Hong Kong.

On Wednesday, the government’s Facebook page Tamar Talk, published a post saying that adaptors and extension units, as well as daily necessities such toiletries, will be provided for people under quarantine.

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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.