The Kelantan government has urged the government to enforce strict movement restrictions in the state – similar to that implemented last year – to curb the spread of Covid-19.
A well-placed source told Malaysiakini that the state government had sought such curbs last month, but the proposal was rejected by the federal government due to its impact on the economy.
“However, because the Covid-19 situation in Kelantan is very worrying over the past weeks, where our hospital and quarantine facilities are in a critical state, we appealed against the decision several days ago.
According to the source, the federal government hasn’t provided any sort of feedback.
On March 18 until April 30 last year, the movement control order (MCO) was enforced, limiting travel for food, medicine and essential service purposes only. There was also a single-occupant vehicle rule.
During this period, most businesses were forced to be shuttered.
A slightly more relaxed version of the MCO – which allowed schools and most businesses to stay open – was introduced in January in certain regions and in Kelantan last month.
According to the source, the Kelantan chapter of the National Security Council has deliberated on the state government’s appeal.
“Kelantan has had two weeks of MCO. However, the new Covid-19 cases are not going down because most economic activities are operating as usual.
“A ‘lockdown’, such as the one seen last year, will ensure most sectors remain closed and limit movements, unlike now,” said the source.
Malaysiakini is contacting senior minister (security cluster) Ismail Sabri Yaakob and the state government for further details.
Over the past 14 days, Kelantan has averaged 462 new Covid-19 cases daily. Hospitals are at saturation point, prompting the state government to build a field hospital and set up a new quarantine centre. MKINI
Covid-19: Malaysia records 3,120 new cases; half in Selangor, Sarawak, KL
KUALA LUMPUR— Malaysia today recorded 3,120 new Covid-19 infections, with 54.6 per cent or half of these patients found in the states of Selangor, Sarawak, and Kuala Lumpur alone, the Health Ministry’s latest statistics show.
The breakdown of the new cases today are Selangor (675), Sarawak (620) and Kuala Lumpur (408), followed by Johor (336) and Kelantan (296).
The rest of the new cases today were recorded in Penang (167), Kedah (155), Perak (117), Negri Sembilan (95), Sabah (89), Terengganu (53), Melaka (52), Pahang (41), Putrajaya (11) and Labuan (five), while zero cases were reported in Perlis.
Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob is scheduled to hold a press conference this evening at around 5pm, after days of speculation that a movement control order (MCO) will be reintroduced in the Klang Valley as well as several states.
Malaysia has so far had two iterations of the MCO — either nationwide or covering most parts of the country.
Ismail Sabri was later reported on the same day as denying the speculation, saying that there has yet to even be a meeting by the National Security Council (NSC) since Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s remark on the government’s need to review the current MCO.
MKINI / MALAY MAIL