Two ministers quarantined

Staying away: (From left) Mustapa, Redzuan and Saifuddin.Staying away: (From left) Mustapa, Redzuan and Saifuddin.

PETALING JAYA: At least two ministers are now self-isolating after they sat next to Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed, who tested positive for Covid-19, during a meeting in Putrajaya on Jan 6.

Also ordered to undergo testing are Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia leaders who attended a party meeting with Mustapa on the same day.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof and Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah confirmed they had been identified

as close contacts and were now in isolation as a precautionary measure.

“Throughout the Cabinet meeting, there was no physical contact. We were not only physically distanced but there was also a screen between us. Also, we were all wearing masks.

“However, as an identified close contact, I will undergo a swab test as well as remain in isolation as directed, ” said Mohd Redzuan.

During the meeting, ministers said Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was seated about seven chairs away – about 7m – from Mustapa.

Saifuddin said while he had not experienced any symptoms, he was monitoring himself under home surveillance order (HSO).

He said he would also be undergoing a swab test and would remain in isolation until given full clearance by the Health Ministry during a second screening.

Mustapa, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, confirmed in a statement yesterday that he had tested positive for Covid-19 on Saturday.

He was tested as soon as he reached Kota Baru on the morning of the same day.

Mustapa, who had tested negative in an earlier screening on Jan 1, is reported to be in stable condition at Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab II in Kota Baru.

“All his close contacts from Jan 1 to 9 are advised to undergo screening as soon as possible. He has apologised for the inconvenience caused, ” said his office.

Religious Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri had in early October also tested positive for Covid-19 after travelling to Sabah.

This led to those in close contact with him, including Cabinet ministers and Muhyiddin, to undergo health screening and self-quarantine.

Meanwhile, Bersatu leaders, who attended its supreme leadership council meeting on Jan 6 with Mustapa, were ordered to undergo Covid-19 tests immediately.

Its information chief Wan Saiful Wan Jan said Mustapa had attended the meeting, which was conducted according to SOP.

“However, as a preventive measure, all council members who attended the meeting have been ordered to take a Covid-19 test immediately, ” he said in a statement on the party’s Whatapp group yesterday.

Those involved would also have to adhere to the required SOP issued by the Health Ministry, he said.

Among those at the meeting were Wan Saiful, party vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee, supreme council members Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, Saifuddin and Redzuan.

Also present were Srikandi (Women) chief Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun, Armada (youth) chief Wan Ahmad Fayshal Wan Ahmad Kamal and Srikandi vice-chief Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin.

Azmin is the International Trade and Industries Minister while Rina is the Women, Family and Community Development Minister. Kiandee is the Agriculture and Food Industries Minister.

The meeting, which was chaired by Bersatu president Muhyiddin, was held in light of calls by several Umno divisions to withdraw support for Perikatan Nasional.

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