By Karen Bong
KUCHING, Feb 16: Houses of worship in yellow and green zones of Sarawak are allowed to open for prayers only with strict compliance of standard operating procedure (SOP) during Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) from Feb 15 to March 1.
In the latest SOP issued, Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) pointed out that attendance should be limited to not more that 100 people at any one time, subject to the size of the house of worship and physical distancing of one metre at least.
However, other activities like cultural, funeral services, wedding services, meetings, seminars and courses are still prohibited.
As for the red and orange zones, houses of worship are still not allowed to be reopened for the general public except for crew members to conduct virtual services.
To carry out virtual services, not more than 12 people are allowed either for live streaming crew or committee members and must adhere to the SOP.
The basic SOP applied to all activities include putting up information and notices related to new normal to be observed as well as setting up a counter at the entrance for taking body temperature taking, hand sanitiser and recording attendance of worshippers using MySejahtera app or manually inside books.
All attendees are required to put on face masks at all times and wash or sanitise their hands frequently.
Houses of worship are also required to clean and sanitise their premises frequently while activities in which crowd control cannot be practised are strictly not allowed.
Any management committee members, staff and worshippers detected with a fever or have any symptoms such as cough, sore throat, flu or breathing difficulty must not be allowed to enter the houses of worship.
There should be continuous practice to avoid crowding, gathering and mingling with one another in close proximity.
However, all activities including virtual services are still not allowed in Enhance MCO (EMCO) areas.
Religious activities involving visiting from house to house are not allowed while invited speakers or clerics from outside of Sarawak are not permitted unless they have been in the State for 30 consecutive days.
Those with chronic diseases, senior citizens and children aged 12 years and below are discouraged from going to houses of worship. — DayakDaily