[UPDATE - 7.31pm, 10 May]
Just two days after announcing new guidelines for the Movement Control Order (MCO), the government has announced that the whole of Malaysia will be placed under lockdown beginning 12 May.
In a statement released on his official social media pages, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said the decision was made after taking into account the current COVID-19 situation in Malaysia.
As of today (10 May), there are 37,396 active cases in Malaysia, with 434 patients in the ICU.
In the press statement, Muhyiddin also announced several new SOPs. There are:
- Interstate and interdistrict travels are still not allowed. Travels are only allowed for emergency, health, work, economy, vaccination and for long-distance spouses
- All forms of gathering are not allowed, including social gatherings such as weddings, birthdays and dinners. Face-to-face seminars and conferences are not allowed. Akad nikah ceremonies are allowed, but with strict restrictions
- All contact sports and activities are not allowed, except for individual fitness activities such as jogging and cycling
- All education institutes are ordered to close, except for students taking international examinations. Kindergarten and childcare centers are allowed to open but under strict SOPs
- Only three people are allowed in the vehicle, including the driver. This applies for private vehicles and also e-hailing services
- Dine-in in restaurants are also not allowed, only takeaways and deliveries are allowed
- During the Hari Raya period, all home visits and visits to the cemetery are not allowed. The Solat Sunat Aidilfitri are allowed, but with a maximum limit of 50 people for mosques and suraus that have a capacity of more than 1,000 people
The full list of SOPs will be announced by the National Security Council, Muhyiddin said in the press release.
No matter how annoyed most of us are over the latest MCO and travel restrictions, the truth remains that our healthcare system is overwhelmed and a lockdown is imperative.
It will help if we had a more competent government that's consistent and made decisions based on data instead of whatever they are doing now, but that doesn't mean we don't do our parts.
For those who don't have the luxury of staying home as much as possible, here are some of the things you need to know about the ever-changing SOPs. It may differ some in some states, but these are the generic ones that should apply.
Current SOPs in MCO areas
Berikut adalah ringkasan makluman berkaitan PKP 3.0 yang boleh dijadikan rujukan anda.
— MAJLIS KESELAMATAN NEGARA (@MKNJPM) May 9, 2021
Terus patuhi SOP, lindungi diri dan mampankan ekonomi.
Sumber :@MITIMalaysia pic.twitter.com/t3LiFJeIKx
As of 10 May 2021, these are some of the things that we have to take note:
- No interstate and inter-district travels. A lot of confusion arose when the government announced MCO in six districts in Selangor (i.e. Hulu Langat, Petaling, Gombak, Klang, Kuala Langat, Sepang), followed by Kuala Lumpur. However, Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri had announced that no interstate and inter-district will be allowed nationwide till 6 June, so there you have it.
- As usual, there are exceptions to the rule. If you you live in Klang Valley and still have to work, you only need a letter from MITI and your workplace to cross state and district borders. Same goes with others who have to travel for work.
- If you have an emergency, you have to get a letter from the police.
- If you are one of the lucky ones to have managed to register for the AstraZeneca vaccine and need to cross borders, just show your appointment on MySejahtera if you pass a roadblock.
- Food outlets are only open till 12am and no dine-ins are allowed.
- All schools and educational institutions are closed.
- Ramadan bazaars will also be closed beginning 10 May in MCO areas.
- Sports and recreational activities are also allowed provided that the activities they can be held in open areas and physical distancing is possible.
- Clubs and pubs are not allowed to operate.
- Spas and reflexology centres are also not allowed to operate.
- Theme parks, cinemas, karaokes, and indoor playgrounds will also be closed.
It's a frustrating and confusing time but the reality remains that COVID-19 is here to stay awhile. We have to hang in there a little longer so we can all be free of this cursed pandemic.