As Malaysia prepares for another Movement Control Order (MCO)
, the government has resorted to an even more drastic measure.
The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah has declared a nationwide state of emergency on Tuesday (12 January).
Worrying rise in COVID-19 cases
The state of emergency was declared to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
The announcement was made through a press statement released by Dato' Indera Ahmad Fadil bin Hj. Shamsuddin, the Comptroller of the Royal Family and Household.
The emergency will last until 1 August, or earlier, depending on the state of COVID-19 infections in the country.
According to the statement, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin had an audience with the King at 5.30pm on Monday to propose a declaration of a state of emergency.
Muhyiddin requested the emergency as a proactive measure to curb the number of infections, the statement said.
"Al-Sultan Abdullah is of the opinion that the spread of COVID-19 is at a critical stage and that there is a need to declare a proclamation of emergency," the statement further said.
The King has also consented to the government's proposal of setting up an independent committee, comprising of government, opposition members of parliament (MPs), and health experts, to manage the COVID-19 situation in the country.
The number of COVID-19 cases in Malaysia has reached worrying levels in recent weeks, with the number of daily cases topping the 3,000-mark
for the first time on 7 January.
Malaysia currently has a total of 28,554 active COVID-19 cases as of Monday (11 January), with a total of 555 deaths.