‘We will not rush to reopen borders’


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 16 Sep 2020

PETALING JAYA: With Covid-19 cases on the rise globally, the government will not rush to reopen the country’s borders, says Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin

The Prime Minister said they would also continue to prevent the entry of illegal immigrants into Malaysia.

Based on the data available, Muhyiddin said the pandemic was expected to continue for a long time.

He noted countries around the world were struggling to contain the pandemic or prevent new waves from occurring.

“The same can happen here if we let our guard down and disregard the global situation,” he said in a special address of the current Covid-19 situation in the country last night.

Although closing borders caused hardship to those who had interests outside the country, he said decisive action had to be taken to protect the people and the country.

“We must strike a fine balance between protecting lives and livelihoods of all Malaysians,” he said.

Muhyiddin also advised all Sabahans to take extra care during the ongoing state elections as there had been a rise in Covid-19 cases there.

He expressed hope that election authorities would ensure campaigning followed standard operating procedures (SOP) as set by the Ministry of Health and the National Security Council (NSC).

“In normal circumstances, during the election season many people would gather and greet one another.

“I would like to advise everybody to avoid any gatherings at crowded places.

“Please avoid shaking hands with the voters. The most important thing is for us to protect one another from Covid-19. We look after each other,” he added.

The Prime Minister said that of late, the number of cases in the country had been on an uptrend, causing three districts to be categorised as red zones– namely Kotar Setar in Kedah, as well as Lahad Datu and Tawau in Sabah.

“Although the country has been successful in curbing the spread of the disease, I am worried because the number of positive cases has been rising lately,” he said.

He said that a total of 615 new cases had been detected in the past 14 days.

Muhyiddin said that if the number of cases spiked drastically, they would have to reintroduce the movement control order (MCO) again.

Until yesterday, a total of 9,969 positive cases of the disease have been detected, with 128 deaths or a rate of 1.28% of all the cases.

There are still 11 active clusters in the country.

The country is now in the recovery MCO phase, until the end of the year.

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