MoH advises Muslim celebrants to have “homely” Raya

Dr Noor Hisham addressing the media during the ministry's press conference at Putrajaya. Photo Credit: Radio Television Malaysia (RTM). Attachments area

By Adrian Lim

KUCHING, May 15: Muslims throughout the country are advised to spend their Hari Raya celebration at home with close family members.

In view of the Covid-19 outbreak Health director-general, Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah stated that Muslims in the country will need to experience the Hari Raya celebration this year without going out for visitations.

He described the upcoming Hari Raya celebration as unprecedented and unique, a situation that has never happened before.

Dr Noor Hisham opined that Muslims could also implement a curfew for their homes if there was a need to prevent outsiders from visiting them during the upcoming Hari Raya celebration.

“Certainly, looking into Saudi Arabia, the incidence (of Covid-19 infection) is very high.

“We from the Ministry of Health (MoH) would like to advocate or even advise the people to have a homely Hari Raya, a homely closed-door Hari Raya.

“This is unprecedented but at least we can protect our families and our community,” Dr Noor Hisham told reporters during a press conference on the national Covid-19 updates at Putrajaya today.

He stated that in Saudi Arabia, a 24-hour curfew will be implemented during the Aidilfitri period to curb and prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the country.

He emphasised that Muslims need to take precautionary measures if there are family members who are returning from any red zones to protect the elderly and the disabled among family members.

On the question of limiting the number of family members to 20 people in one house during Hari Raya, Dr Noor Hisham said it depended on the size of the house.

He explained that the number of people allowed to visit any at one time was just a relative figure, adding that there was no one size which fits all.

Citing an example of a confined space of an apartment, Dr Noor Hisham said it was not feasible for 20 family members to assemble inside the apartment.

More importantly, he noted it was crucial for the family members to comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) of avoiding crowded places, confined spaces and close conversations to curb Covid-19 transmission.

He also encouraged the public to practise social distancing.

This is because when the public maintained a distance with another person who could be Covid-19 positive, he explained that the risk of infection was reduced.

On the issue of asymptomatic cases of Covid-19, he revealed that the percentage among the public who might contract Covid-19 was low.

Citing a case in Selangor which involved an asymptomatic case in a public area, he noted the percentage to be positive was 0.18 per cent out of the total number of people screened for Covid-19.

He added the total percentage of asymptomatic cases of Covid-19 in Malaysia was 1.62 per cent adding that the majority of the cases was contributed by tahfiz students from a specific group.

Hence, he advised the public to take precautionary measures.

Those include practice social distancing, avoid crowded spaces, avoid close conversation and practice good personal hygiene to avoid being infected with Covid-19.

Meanwhile, Dr Noor Hisham disclosed that Malaysia reported an additional 36 new positive cases of Covid-19 today.

He revealed the additional positive cases has brought the cumulative number of positive case in Malaysia to 6,855.

He noted that out of the 36 new cases, 28 cases involved foreigners while the remaining eight cases were locals.

Dr Noor Hisham observed that there are still 1,304 active cases of Covid-19 being treated throughout the country.

He noted they were also 88 cases of recoveries today which brought the cumulative number of recoveries for Covid-19 to 5,439 cases.

No casualties were reported today. —DayakDaily