By Karen Bong
KUCHING, April 23: The Movement Control Order (MCO) to curb the Covid-19 pandemic in the country has been extended for another two weeks until May 12.
The third phase of the MCO was scheduled to end next Tuesday (April 28). It was extended for the third time since it was enforced on March 18 with the first phase lasting until April 14 and then being extended to April 28.
Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddi Yassin, in making this announcement today, said that based on the data presented by the Ministry of Health, the efforts to curb the Covid-19 outbreak still need to be continued.
“Even though the figures (on the Covid-19 situation in the country) showed positive development, the measures taken must continue to a point where we are confident that the Covid-19 outbreak can be fully prevented,” he said in a live broadcast which was carried by major media networks earlier tonight.
During the MCO period, he pointed out, the federal government will evaluate all the latest data provided by the Health Ministry to determine the next course of action.
“I do not rule out the possibility of the MCO being extended again later. This means that you may not be able to celebrate the Hari Raya holidays in ‘kampung’ (hometown),” he said.
Muhyiddin noted that many people still cannot return to work except those in approved essential services and sectors while businesses are not fully open.
“However, if the number of Covid-19 cases continue to drop significantly, the government is likely to ease the MCO restrictions in stages in several sectors including social sector to enable people to live more comfortably.
“The National Security Council (NSC) is developing a comprehensive plan for this,” he added.
As the Covid-19 situation continues to improve, Muhyiddin expressed gratitude that Malaysia is among countries with the highest rates of recovery in the world.
He noted that the number of Covid-19 infections in the country has been greatly reduced from hundreds of new cases daily at the beginning of the MCO to dozens of cases today while the number of Covid-19 recoveries have increased significantly, with a total of 3,542 or 63.2 per cent of all patients recovered so far.
“With all the efforts ongoing by our frontliners, and the discipline of all in complying with the MCO, we hope to reduce the new Covid-19 cases to the most minimum, and completely curb the spread of the virus,” he added. — DayakDaily