JOHOR BARU: A huge crowd of Indonesian nationals gathered at the Kukup International Ferry Terminal in Pontian to travel back home following the movement control order (MCO).
Pontian OCPD Supt Mustafa Bakri Salleh said the exodus took place on the first day of the MCO involving many workers, including those in factories in Johor.
"Most of them are those working here who wanted to be back with their families during the MCO period as they were given time off.
"Temperature checks and other precautionary measures from both the state Health Department, as well as from the Indonesia side, have been put in place at the checkpoint since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak," he said on Saturday (March 21).
He added that the number of trips from the ferry terminal to Tanjung Balai, Indonesia, would be increased.
"There are currently four trips from the Kukup ferry terminal to Tanjung Balai daily.
"We are trying to increase the number of trips to six to cope with the high number of passengers," he said, adding that each trip could carry about 160 passengers.
Earlier, Tanjung Piai MP Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng posted photos of the crowd in his Facebook page.
He said that he had received complaints from villagers around the area who were concerned that the huge crowd that could further spread the disease.
"I have been receiving complaints from villagers this morning that the checkpoint in Kukup were overwhelmed by Indonesian nationals who wanted to return to their country.
"Villagers are worried that such a crowd would accelerate the spread of the virus and cause disaster," he said in the Facebook post on Mac 21.
He added that he has contacted Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Hasni Mohammad, Pontian district officer and Pontian OCPD and urged them to take action.
"The Mentri Besar has told the National Security Council (NSC) and state Immigration Department to assist in the situation," he said.