Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin yesterday announced that certain states and locations in Malaysia will be entering MCO or CMCO phases accordingly at 12.01 AM, 13 January 2021. During a press conference held earlier, senior minister Ismail Sabri followed up on the statement by revealing the necessary standard operating procedures (SOPs) that are required to be complied by Malaysians throughout the two-week duration of the respective movement control orders.
The following is the list of SOPs that will be made effective starting tomorrow, according to the minister:
MCO Locations (Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Labuan, Putrajaya, Penang, Melaka, Johor and Sabah)
- Citizens are not allowed to leave their current locations or homes, with the exception of individuals who have already purchased plane or bus tickets beforehand to travel within the MCO period. The latter are still required to have a letter of permission from authorities in order to travel accordingly. That being said, any form of international, domestic and interstate travel are not permitted.
- A maximum of two people from the same household are allowed to travel out of their homes within a 10km radius via a vehicle in order to purchase food, medication and other essential items. A total of three individuals per vehicle is only permitted for emergency situations.
- Social activities such as festive celebrations, seminars and so on are not allowed.
- Group-based sports and recreation, as well as social related activities are not allowed. However, activities such as jogging or cycling are allowed – provided that individuals comply with social distancing rules and not done in groups.
- Only a maximum of 5 mosque/house of worship committee members are allowed at these premises for religious activities.
- Businesses such as convenience stores, supermarkets, food stalls and so on are allowed to operate from 6am to 8pm. Eateries such as restaurants are required to only serve for delivery and takeout orders, while dine-ins are not permitted. Additionally, Ismail Sabri noted that only non-self service laundromats are allowed to operate.
- Pharmacies, clinics and hospitals are allowed to operate 24 hours.
- Fuel stations are only allowed to open from 6am to 10pm, with the exception of those located along highways which are permitted to operate 24 hours.
- Essential Economic Sectors such as manufacturing and production, essential services, trade and distribution, as well as agriculture and commodities are allowed to operate during the MCO period. However, only 30% of employees in the management level will be allowed in the respective workplaces. The detailed list of essential services according to the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) can be found via the following links: MCO / CMCO.
- Daycare centers and kindergartens are allowed to operate from 6am to 8pm. The minister explained that this is to help ease parents who are required to be at their respective workplaces during the MCO period.
- Students due for examinations such as SPM, SVM, SKM, STPM, STAM and DVM are permitted to attend classes. In addition, permits will be provided to students and educators, with the Ministry of Education to strictly monitor SOP compliance.
- All primary school and secondary school (Form One to Form Four) students are required to resume online learning from 20 January onwards.
CMCO Locations (Pahang, Perak, Negeri Sembilan, Kedah, Terengganu and Kelantan)
Ismail Sabri explained that the SOPs for CMCO locations will be mostly similar to those announced when it was first implemented in Malaysia back in October 2020. The following are the minor changes listed out by the minister earlier:
- All forms of public gatherings and activities are not allowed.
- Non-contact sporting activities that involve less than 10 participants are allowed.
RMCO Locations (Perlis and Sarawak)
As for locations designated under RMCO, the minister explained that the SOPs will be the same as its first introduction in June last year. But with one major change, where interstate or domestic travel are no longer permitted.
Changing Of Phases
At this time, the respective movement control orders designated to various states across Malaysia will be in effect for a total of 14 days, as previously mentioned. Ismail Sabri noted that phases may change depending on the outcome after the initial duration. For instance; states under MCO will be shifted to CMCO and later RMCO status, should the situation improve over time. However, the reverse will be implemented if CMCO and RMCO areas see a rise in the number of infections.
A gentle reminder to all fellow Malaysians that the battle with the COVID-19 pandemic is still far from over, and it is our mutual goal to curb its spreading. So do stay at home, practice social distancing when outside, always sanitise and importantly, please stay safe.