Simple and clear guidelines needed


  • Metro News
  • Monday, 17 Aug 2020

Tunku Ismail (third left) during his visit to the CIQ Complex in Sultan Iskandar Building. Johor state secretary Datuk Azmi Rohani is at left. — THOMAS YONG/The Star

JOHOR BARU: With the Johor-Singapore border set to reopen partially today, all agencies involved in the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) between Malaysia and Singapore must be fully prepared with all safety measures in place.

In making the call, Tunku Mahkota of Johor (TMJ) Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim said this was to ensure the well-being of the people in the face of Covid-19.

During a visit to the Customs, Immigration, and Quarantine Complex (CIQ) Sultan Iskandar Building (BSI), Tunku Ismail said that he had also highlighted several concerns on the standard operation procedure (SOP) implementation.

“I am extremely concerned about the safety of the Johor rakyat and hope all involved agencies will make the best and most detailed preparation to contain the Covid-19 outbreak.

“The relevant authorities promised to resolve them before the reopening of the border,” he said in a statement through his official Facebook account last week.

He added that he had also advised the Immigration Department and the Health Ministry to publish simple and clear guidelines for individuals wishing to cross the border.

“They can publish the guidelines on their websites and social media platforms, especially for those living in Johor and Singapore,” he said.

The Johor-Singapore border is set for conditional reopening today and the SOP is part of the preparations for this.

Johor Immigration director Baharuddin Tahir, when met after the visit, said to date, applications to travel under the RGL and PCA was fully booked from until Aug 19.

“We only allow 400 people to travel per week under the RGL or at least 60 people per day and 2,000 people per day under the PCA.

“Applications and the quota can be seen and made through the Immigration Department My Travel Pass (MTP) website at https://mtp.imi.gov.my/myTravelPass,” he said, adding that a 24-hour confirmation would be given to applicants before their travel date.

Johor Health Department director Dr Aman Rabu said that there was ample manpower at the complex comprising personnel from Rela, police and Health Department at the bus, car, motorcycle and pedestrian lane.

Aside from filling up the online application, visitors must also download the MySejahtera application on their smartphones.

On July 26, Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein and his Singapore counterpart Dr Vivian Balakrishnan met at the halfway mark of Causeway in a symbolic gesture to mark the agreement by both countries to reopen their borders on Aug 17 under the RGL and PCA.

The border was closed after Malaysia introduced the movement control order (MCO) to curb the spread of Covid-19 on March 18.

RGL will enable cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes between Malaysia and Singapore up to a maximum of 400 people a week, for stays up to two weeks.

PCA, on the other hand, will allow residents of both countries who hold long-term immigration passes for business and work purposes in the other country, to enter that country for work, up to a maximum of 2,000 people a day.

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