PETALING JAYA: The Health Ministry is investigating allegations that a minister did not undergo the stipulated 14-day quarantine after returning from an overseas trip.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah confirmed that Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali had undergone the Covid-19 test when he returned home from Turkey.
“We are investigating. It was the period of home quarantine then.
“If tested positive, he would be admitted to hospital, and if he was negative, (he needs to undergo) mandatory home quarantine for 14 days,” he told a news portal yesterday.
Earlier, a source close to the minister explained that Mohd Khairuddin was given a special Covid-19 test when he returned from his trip and the results were negative.
“The special test was to enable the country’s leaders who go in and out of the country, including on personal matters, to undergo the test swiftly.
“His trip abroad was with the permission of the Prime Minister and Turkey at the time was still categorised as a green zone country,” the source was quoted by Sinar Harian as saying.
When contacted, Mohd Khairuddin said he would be issuing a statement on the matter soon.
“Wait for the official statement, God willing,” he added.
On Tuesday, Seputeh MP Teresa Kok claimed that Mohd Khairuddin had visited Turkey in an unofficial visit from July 3 to 7 but attended Parliament a week later.
Another MP, RSN Rayer, asked for a ruling from the Deputy Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Rashid Hasnon who was presiding the sitting then.
Rashid then told Rayer to write an official complaint for the House to look into the matter.
At the time of the minister’s alleged visit, Turkey had been averaging over 1,000 new cases a day.
As of Aug 18, Turkey has 251,805 confirmed cases, with 12,876 active cases.
In Malaysia, those returning from other countries are to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine.
The recent Sivagangga cluster had emerged because of a returnee who broke home quarantine rules.
The man had initially tested negative for Covid-19 upon his return from India at the KL International Airport.
He was jailed five months and fined RM12,000.
Another woman in Perak, who was caught wearing the pink Covid-19 home quarantine wristband while dining out, was jailed one day and fined RM8,000.