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Ending of Malaysia’s movement control order will depend on how far citizens can conform to it: Muhyiddin

PUTRAJAYA: Any decision to end the conditional movement control order (MCO) will depend on how far Malaysians can conform to it and, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said on Saturday (May 23). 

Originally scheduled to end on May 12, Malaysia’s MCO was extended for a further month until Jun 9, the fourth extension since it was enforced on Mar 18.

Applying the standard operating procedures introduced during the conditional MCO to daily life is not an individual effort, but rather a collective one, said Mr Muhyiddin.

He called on Malaysians, particularly society and community leaders, to shoulder greater responsibility in the fight to contain COVID-19.

To prevent infection, Mr Muhyiddin said that everyone must individually stick to the SOPs as far as possible, including having their body temperature taken, practicing social distancing, wearing face masks and using hand sanitiser regularly. 

Every citizen must play a role, including reprimanding each other’s non-compliance when the situation calls for it, he said.

“We are fortunate with having one of the best healthcare systems in the world. We also have doctors, nurses and frontliners who serve with the highest level of dedication and professionalism, and this is why we are among the nations that have managed to successfully contain the pandemic so far.

“However, in forging further success, what is important is our own personal responsibility. My responsibility, and yours … and if we adhere to the SOPs, then we have undertaken our responsibilities, and this would mean much more to all of us.

“No one else has the ability to carry out these duties and responsibilities other than ourselves,” he said in his Hari Raya Aidilfitri address that was broadcast on television tonight.

READ: Malaysian PM Muhyiddin quarantined for 14 days after officer contracts COVID-19

READ: All arrivals in Malaysia must pay for mandatory hotel quarantine

Last Sunday, Mr Muhyiddin announced that people would not be allowed to cross states to celebrate a few upcoming festivals, including Hari Raya Aidilfitri. 

Gatherings of up to 20 people are allowed during the celebrations, but the prime minister advised against open house gatherings and banquets. 

“To preserve life, we have to sacrifice some of our traditions or norms so as to prevent infection … I am reminding and advising everyone, discuss with family members and relatives as to whom should be allowed to visit … and when they come visiting, ensure they practise social distancing, and avoid ‘salams’ (handshake greetings) and body contact,” he said in his address.

“Protect our aged parents and grandparents as they are more vulnerable to infection. It is alright if we do not get to ‘salam’, hug and kiss our grandparents this time. It is not that we do not love them, but it is because we love them that we refrain from body contact.”

The prime minister advised the public to ensure their homes are cleaned up immediately after hosting guests, and also to refrain from visiting graves, a norm during Hari Raya.

“All these are important so that we can celebrate Aidilfitri and at the same time prevent the spread of COVID-19 once the festive holidays are over.

“I mention all these because in several other countries, the outbreak got worse during festive seasons. We need to prevent this from happening in our country, so let us take all precautions now so that we can be safe later on.”

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