PUTRAJAYA: Malaysians who return to the country will immediately be quarantined for 14 days from April 3, says Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
Those coming back – either on chartered or commercial flights – will immediately be sent to government quarantine centres as soon as they step off the plane, he added.
The government advised Malaysians abroad who had accommodation to stay put but many said they wanted to return, he added.
“We noted that some countries are experiencing an increase in Covid-19 cases because its citizens are returning from abroad.
“Which is why the government has decided that Malaysians who return will be quarantined for 14 days, ” he said yesterday.
Ismail Sabri said the authorities are making necessary preparations, including transportation and other facilities to take them in.
“Following this decision, the public need not come to the airport to pick up family members because once they arrive, they will be taken straight to the quarantine centres.
“They can still keep in touch with their loved ones via phone, ” he said.
The minister also said the armed forces will help deliver food and basic necessities to the people in the interiors of Sabah and Sarawak.
“The government will ensure the people have sufficient food supply for their daily needs, ” he said.
He added that highway operators have agreed to allow stall and shop operators at the R&Rs to be exempted from rent for six months.
This, he said, is good news to traders who hardly see any business due to the movement control order to stop the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ismail Sabri also told the media that disinfection measures were out by the Housing and Local Government Ministry at 47 areas including 23 which are red zones.
He said to avoid crowds at wet markets, Fama will open 77 centres nationwide to sell fresh produce.
In Putrajaya, Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham said Malaysians returning from abroad have to be quarantined at special centres as up to 15% did not comply with home quarantine orders.
The ministry found positive cases in Malaysia spread locally by those who came back from overseas.
“We have identified 364 quarantine centres to put up these returning Malaysians.
“We find that when we ask people to do home quarantine, the compliance rate is about 75% to 80% because there are some who still go out, ” said Dr Noor Hisham at a press conference here.