Stern action for those trying to balik kampung

Going nowhere: Traffic accumulating at the Gombak Toll Plaza due to a roadblock around 6pm yesterday. Hundreds of motorists bearing various reasons were told to turn back. — IZZRAFIQ ALIAS/The Star

PETALING JAYA: Those who attempt to travel interstate to return to their hometowns will have to face stern action, says Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

“Stricter enforcement is in play,” he said, adding that anyone who flouted the conditional movement control order (MCO), including attempting to balik kampung would be fined.

“Although we have told the people not to balik kampung for the Hari Raya celebration, it is still happening.

“I want to remind everyone that the roadblocks have started and action will be taken,” he said yesterday.“As of Friday night, 508 cars that tried to cross a state border for various reasons were told to turn back.

“There were 146 interstate roadblocks and 238,500 vehicles inspected,” he said, adding that 72 people were arrested for flouting the MCO, 60 of whom were remanded and 12 released on police bail.

Ismail Sabri also announced that those under the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme, who are currently stranded abroad, could start returning to Malaysia beginning today.

However, they must first undergo Covid-19 screening where they are and be certified negative before taking the flight back here.

“If they are positive, they won’t be allowed to come back. Upon arriving in Malaysia, they would have to be quarantined for 14 days because they would have had contact with other passengers on the flight.

“They have to bear the cost of quarantine,” he said.

Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri had said in a statement that there were 253 MM2H members, including their dependents, who were stranded abroad and had requested to return.

Tour agencies, said Ismail Sabri, would be allowed to open for administrative, financial and management of their tour packages.

“They can prepare for their future packages as tourism is still on the negative list for now,” he said.

Ismail said operators of ferry services to and from Pulau Langkawi would not be allowed to raise the price of their fares, adding that the price of fuel had decreased.

As of May 15, he said a multi-agency task force had arrested 1,408 illegal immigrants who tried to enter the country illegally via “rat lanes” by land and waterways.

Fourteen people who tried to smuggle illegals into the country were also arrested.

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