Masing: All “balik kampung” attempts should be stopped to contain Covid-19

Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing

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KUCHING, Mar 18: The implementation of the Restricted Movement Order is not “cuti-cuti Malaysia” which can be treated as a time to “balik kampung” as Covid-19 may be spread through such movement.

This is the view of Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing who said the “Balik Kampung” movement will totally defeat the purpose of the implementation of Restricted Movement Order.

“This mass movement of people will further spread Covid-19 even faster.

“Malaysian police, army and officers of uniform should be recruited to stop this mass movement with immediate effect.

“Once they have gone to their respective kampungs, villages, settlements and towns throughout Malaysia, those infected by Covid-19 will infect hundreds of others. The rate of spread is one to 10 persons,” said Masing.

He said such mass movement should be anticipated by the authorities where preventive measures should have been taken earlier.

“We should have anticipated this mass movement before announcing the lockdown and stop people from moving away from where they are. 

“They should have stay put. Now they have gone. We will have bigger problem in containing the spread of Covid-19,” said Masing.

He said Covid-19 is an unprecedented incidence and unprecedented measures needed to be applied to stop the spread.

“Normal management measures will not work. We have to be tough and excuses will not be accepted,” said Masing.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin during a special address on Monday evening, announced that the federal government will be implementing restricted movement order from March 18 to 31.

“This includes the general prohibition of mass movements and gatherings across the country including religious, sports, social and cultural activities. 

“To enforce this prohibition, all houses of worship and business premises must be closed except for supermarkets, public markets, convenience stores and convenience stores selling everyday necessities,” said Muhyiddin. — DayakDaily