PETALING JAYA: Increasing the quarantine period from 10 days to 14 days for travellers from certain countries is the right thing to do, says the Health Ministry.
Read more here: Covid-19: 2,717 new cases bring total to 390,252
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry welcomed the decision due to the African variant of the Covid-19 virus.
"This will minimise the risk of inflow of positive cases from variants of concern into the country," he said in a statement on Saturday (April 24).
Senior Minister (Security) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced earlier on Saturday that those who enter Malaysia from certain countries, such as the United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil and Japan, will need to undergo a 14-day quarantine.
The Defence Minister said the travellers also need to take a swab test from the country of origin, three days before flying here.
Dr Noor Hisham said that on Friday (April 23), four locally transmitted cases were identified with the South African variant B.1.351 of the Covid-19.
Three were reported in the Kuala Langat while another was identified at Hospital Tuanku Jaafar Seremban in Negri Sembilan, the first outside of Selangor, he said.
So far, a total of 21 locally transmitted positive cases have been identified as the South African variant B.1.351.
Dr Noor Hisham said that between April 15 and 23, a total of 29 cases from Johor, Selangor, Putrajaya, Sabah and Sarawak have undergone a full genome test.
"They were found to be of the lineage of normal variants in the Peninsular and Sarawak, and not from the variants of concern," he said.
Dr Noor Hisham also noted that 10 new Covid-19 clusters have been identified, bringing the number of active clusters in the country to 352 at present.
Seven of the new clusters were workplace-related with two community clusters and one involving an education institution.
The workplace clusters are the Jalan Abdul Karim cluster and Jalan Melor cluster in Selangor, Leboh Ipoh-Lumut cluster and Jalan Datoh cluster in Perak, Tingkat Mak Mandin cluster in Penang, D'Lahar cluster in Terengganu and Desa Mawar cluster in Pahang.
Others that involved the workplace are the Jalan Kolam Dua cluster in Perak and Dambai Inanam cluster in Sabah, he said, adding that the Jalan St Thomas cluster came from a school in Kuala Lumpur.
He added that 12 clusters had ended on Saturday.