Entire Kuala Lumpur under MCO

PUTRAJAYA: More people will celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri under the movement control order after authorities placed the entire Kuala Lumpur and several localities in Johor, Perak and Terengganu under MCO for 14 days beginning tomorrow until May 20.

This comes after six districts in Selangor went under MCO beginning today until May 17.

Hari Raya Aidilfitri is expected to fall on May 13.

A temporary travelling ban will also be imposed on some countries to prevent new Covid-19 variants from entering Malaysia.

Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said existing standard operating procedure would apply, including a prohibition on social events and eatery dine-ins.

Official or non-official events by the government or private sector were also prohibited.

“Also not allowed are social gatherings such as kenduri, wedding receptions, engagement parties, aqiqah, doa selamat, tahlil, birthdays, reunions and retreats.

“This is enforced on all areas now under MCO, ” he said yesterday, adding that interstate travel would not be allowed with the exception of work purposes and emergencies.

Convenience stores, grocery and sundry shops and pharmacies can operate from 6am to 10pm. Petrol stations too can operate from 6am to 10pm while those located along highways can operate 24 hours.

Hospitals, clinics and medical laboratories are allowed to operate as normal while operating hours for markets are from 6am to 2pm.

As for Ramadan bazaars, while they were allowed to operate with strict standard operating procedure, state governments through local authorities would have the final decision, he said.

He said the decision to impose MCO in Kuala Lumpur was made after health authorities reported the emergence of 17 new clusters between April 1 and 27 and the spike in the number of daily cases.

In Johor, MCO will be enforced in Johor Baru, Kulai and Kota Tinggi which have been categorised as red zones with more than 150 cases reported while the capacity in hospitals and intensive care units reached above 70%.

In Perak, MCO will be imposed in Taiping sub-district as well as the district of Larut Matang and Selama.

In Terengganu, 14 sub-districts in Besut – Kampung Raja, Lubuk Kawah, Pelagat, Tenang, Keluang, Bukit Kenak, Kubang Bemban, Jabi, Pengkalan Nangka, Kerandang, Pasir Akar, Tembila, Bukit Puteri and Kuala Besut – will be under MCO.

Ismail Sabri said that between April 1 and May 3, the Health Ministry recorded 406 positive cases from 5,617 screenings carried out on residents at the localities.

“Health authorities informed us that the surge in cases in Besut district stemmed from the movement of students and workers from a neighbouring state, with infectivity reaching 95%.

“Besut also recorded 15 clusters within that period which have spread to other localities, ” he said.

On the international travel ban, he said this would involve citizens of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nepal but there was no mention on when the ban would take effect.

“The travel restriction imposed on citizens of these countries involved all categories holding long-term social visit passes, business travellers and for social visits.

“Exemptions are, however, given to holders of diplomatic passports and officials as stated in the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961.

“This category will be given due consideration to enter Malaysia using existing standard operating procedure, ” he said.

Malaysia has temporarily banned flights to and from India to stop a new Covid-19 variant from entering the country beginning April 28.

Ships and Indian citizens with Malaysian work permits will also be denied entry.

The National Security Council has agreed to the proposal by the Health Ministry, with exemptions given to Malaysian citizens who will undergo the mandatory 14-day quarantine upon entry.

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