Time to act, time to fight

Personal inspection: Hamzah visiting an MCO roadblock in Kota Damansara.

KUALA LUMPUR: As Malaysia steps up its fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, the Home Ministry has urged Malaysians to give their “fullest support and push”.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin said Malaysia was now entering a very crucial part of the movement control order (MCO) phase.

He said the authorities would carry out stiffer action and stronger measures with the details to be announced.

He said the authorities were monitoring areas that had high confirmed cases.

“These areas will need special attention and support. We need everyone’s help to step up the fight.

“Malaysians need to understand the seriousness of this campaign.

“Our time is short and tight, we can’t afford to see the numbers go up. This is a real fight, ” he said via Skype.

“More police and army personnel will now be stationed to ensure the MCO is effectively carried out.”

The police and armed forces have conducted more than 1,000 roadblocks nationwide and checked over 300,000 vehicles daily.

“The advisory and persuasion period is over. We will now be stricter in the MCO measures.

“Arrests will be made against those who flout the laws.

“Some Malaysians are still stubborn, some still go out for flimsy reasons like to eat a certain food or visit friends, and others just want to play football, ” said Hamzah.

In total, 1,354 people have been arrested for breaking the MCO and 73 people were charged.

Hamzah said they were in non-compliance and violating regulation 3 (1) of the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures within the Local Infected Areas) Regulations 2020.

“As I am talking to you right now, the ministry, with the help of the police, is busy compiling the numbers.

“There is no fun in police going out to stop these violators. Please understand that our policemen and soldiers have families too.

“They are risking their lives being out there, please be considerate, ” he said.

Hamzah said the police, with the support of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, was combing the posts of Malaysians on social media.

“We have received complaints of posts which are clearly racist and seditious.

“I can assure you that action will be taken against these individuals.

“The Home Ministry will not tolerate actions which can create ill feelings among Malaysians, ” he said.

Hamzah said the police wanted to pull its resources to fight the virus and should not be bogged down with work to trace such errant Malaysians.

He praised those in the front line especially the doctors, nurses, police and army who “are keeping long hours and working under extreme conditions”.

“On behalf of the Malaysian government and the people, we salute you for helping us to stay healthy, ” he said.

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