PETALING JAYA: The authorities have directed non-government organisations (NGOs) to channel aid via the Welfare Department (JKM) to reduce the risk of transmission.
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said it would defeat the purpose of imposing the movement control order to minimise contact in order to break the chain of Covid-19 transmission if too many people were allowed to roam the streets.
"We also need to protect the NGO volunteers, as it is vital to observe social distancing, and avoid physical contact at this critical juncture as the authorities are working hard to break the chain of transmission.
"If the NGOs want to contribute, they can do so through JKM.
"JKM has the name list of people in need of aid, and they can deliver it to the target group.
"If they (the NGOs) want to contribute, they can still do so by handing it over to JKM," he said when contacted Sunday (March 29).
Ismail said this when asked to comment on dissatisfaction expressed by NGOs as they were discouraged from delivering essential items to those in need.
"It is more difficult for police to control. Some may bring in 10 bags of food, and some may bring 1,000.
"It is better to leave it to JKM to coordinate distribution," he said.
Ismail also noted that the NGOs tend to take photographs with recipients without observing social distancing.
"Please, stay 1m apart for your own safety and health," he said.
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