New Covid-19 shutdown rules: No movement within states except for food, healthcare, essentials; interstate travel now requires police permission
LA LUMPUR — Malaysians should not move about within their vicinity except for special purposes or essential activities such as buying food or seeking healthcare, and will need police permission when they travel from one state to another during these two weeks, the government said in a set of new regulations gazetted today.
These new regulations, known as the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures Within the Infected Local Areas) Regulations 2020, are applicable from March 18 (today) until March 31.
– to perform any official duty
– to make a journey to and from a limited categories of premises, including any premises which provides essential services, premises involved in the food supply chain, premises selling food and beverages through drive-through, takeaway and delivery
– or any other special purposes that may be permitted by the director-general
No gatherings at all for anything, except for small-size funerals
Beyond this strict list of when Malaysians can move about within the respective state or federal territories they are in, the new regulations also said no one is allowed to gather or be involved in any gathering, regardless of whether it is for religious, sports, recreational, social or cultural purposes.
But the regulations also said funeral ceremonies can be held if the number of those attending is kept to a minimum.
Police permission if crossing state borders
The new regulations said no one shall travel from one infected local area to another infected local area — or in other words, from one state to another state — without the “prior written permission of a police officer in charge of a police station”. – MALAY MAIL
Police rescind ban on inter-state travelling
KUALA LUMPUR: Bukit Aman has rescinded the ban on inter-state travelling.
The Inspector-General of Police said the ban has been withdrawn for the time being until a decision is made on the matter at a meeting on Wednesday (March 18).
“There is no restriction for those travelling between states. However, we still strongly advise the people to stay home and limit their travel, given the dangerous Covid-19 pandemic,” he said when contacted. – ann
Friday prayers in Selangor suspended for a month
KLANG -Wednesday, 18 Mar 2020 : Friday prayers at all mosques in Selangor have been suspended until April 17.
However, Muslims are required to replace the Solat Jumaat with Solat Zohor in their respective homes during the period of suspension.
The directive came via a statement from the Selangor palace which was signed by Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah’s private secretary Datuk Mohamad Munir Bani.
The statement said that gatherings, talks and activities in all mosques, surau and prayer venues were also suspended until April 17.
The usual call to prayer (azan) will continue as usual and Muslims in Selangor are requested to recite the Qunut Nazilah, which is a prayer recited during periods of calamity. – ann
Friday prayers to proceed with minor adjustments
PUTRAJAYA- Friday, 13 Mar 2020: The obligatory Friday prayers for all Muslim males should proceed with minor adjustments, says Datuk Seri Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri.
The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of religious affairs said the adjustments included shortening the sermon.
“Members of the congregation are also advised to perform ablutions at home and wear face masks, while mosque committees are to provide hand sanitisers as part of preventive measures.
“Those showing symptoms of Covid-19 need not attend the prayers, as they are categorised as those who are sick, ” he said after delivering his inaugural message to all religious agencies under the Prime Minister’s Department at Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Mosque here yesterday.
“It is also subject to the pandemic showing its impact on the area or having many of the members of the congregation being tested positive for Covid-19 and the restriction issued by the relevant authorities, such as the Health Ministry.
“The current situation in the country is still under control and it does not require Friday prayers to be suspended, ” he said.
Zulkifli said the department would issue a guideline on the matter to avoid any confusion. – ann
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) on movement control order
1) Name of Order
Movement control order
3) Area of coverage
This order is based on Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 and the Police Act 1967.
– Complete ban on all movements and large gatherings including religious activities, sports, social and cultural events
– Complete restriction on all overseas travels by Malaysians
– Complete restriction on all tourists and foreigners entering into the country
– Closure of all kindergartens and nurseries, national and private schools and all other lower secondary and pre-university educational institutions
– Closure of all public and private higher education institutions as well as Skills Training Institutes
– Closure of all government and private premises except those involved in providing essential services.
6) Can celebrations, weddings and dinners be held?
Marriage solemnisation can be held provided that it does not involve a large gathering. For celebrations and receptions, it is advisable to postpone these events.
7) Does the movement control order applicable for certain hours throughout from March 18-31?
No, the order takes place throughout, at all hours during the period.
8) If my daily needs have finished, can I go out to purchase and return immediately?
9) I am a Malaysian and my husband is a Briton. Would we be allowed to return during the period of the movement control order?
You may, provided you can show proof of marriage which has been either registered with the Malaysian authorities or the original country. The couple would have to go through health screening and self-quarantine to lessen the possibility of being infected or infecting others.
10) My daughter is studying in a foreign country. Is she allowed to return?
Yes, she is allowed. Any Malaysian overseas can return during the period. However, the individual has to go through a health screening and self-quarantine.
11) I hold a long-term pass in Malaysia and was supposed to return to my original country before the movement control order was announced. Can I return to Malaysia during this period?
Only foreigners in essential services are allowed to enter Malaysia during this period. Foreign migrants must possess a letter from their employer and present it to the Immigration authorities upon entry.
12) I work in Singapore. Am I allowed to travel to and fro to my office in Singapore?
No. This order is for all individuals in the country. On the basis of the safety of the community, any individuals working in any neighbouring country, but stay in Malaysia, are not allowed to return to Malaysia and travel daily. It is requested that they inform their employers on this matter.
13) I have made plans to take a holiday in Malaysia and I have made all the payments. Can I continue my holidays?
Under the movement control order, the public is barred from going to all tourist areas for all social activities and if the visit does not involve essential services. You are advised not to continue your holidays.
14) Can I drive to the airport to pick up my friend who has returned and who is working in essential services?
Going to a place quickly and briefly is allowed under the movement control order.
15) Will schools have to replace the off days taken during the period?
There is no need to.
16) Are all activities and classes involving the higher educational and skill institutions also restricted under the movement control order?
17) What about students who are staying in higher educational institution facilities especially foreign students?
All higher education institutions have the choice of staying on campus during the period. Foreign students are advised to return to their countries. Those who return home are not allowed to re-enter during the period of Order. Foreign students who decide to stay put in Malaysia in the hostels will report to their institutes and have to abide by the Order.
18) Will food and beverage businesses such as fast food outlets, restaurants and food courts remain open?
Food outlets may remain open but only for takeaway and delivery through certain companies such as Grab Food and Food Panda.
19) Will public transport such as buses, LRT, MRT, KTM continue to operate?
All public transport will operate as usual during the period.
20) I have paid for the booking of the hotel before the Order was announced. Can I ask for a refund?
The public is advised to talk to the hotels on refunds for bookings made during this period.
21) If there is a death, (not by Covid-19), can I hold prayers and tahlil ?
You may hold prayers with close family members and the mosque khairiah (committee). But it’s only prayers, without tahlil.
NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL