Stricter Covid-19 Countermeasures for Sabah, Says Ismail Sabri

Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob says any tightening of restrictions would be done through targeted EMCO in the locality with Covid-19 infections. ― Bernama pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 3 — More restrictive standard operating procedures (SOPs) will be imposed in Sabah following the persistent rise in Covid-19 cases there, Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said today.

Among others, Ismail Sabri said restaurants, eateries and convenience stores’ operating hours will be shortened.

“In general, all economic, religious and social activities are allowed.

“A few SOPs have been tightened as suggested by the state government itself and this includes restaurant, eateries, sundry and convenient shops operation hours limited to 6am to 8pm,” he said during a press conference.

Previously, Ismail Sabri said businesses under these categories were allowed to open until 2am.

Similarly, he said petrol stations will be limited to operating from 6am to 8pm while wet markets may run from 6am to 2pm and other night markets were allowed to operate as usual.

“Those are among the SOPs put in place to address the spreading of the virus.

“There are many more including e-hailing and food delivery which are allowed to operate from 6am to 8pm,” he said before urging Malaysians to visit the National Security Council’s website for further details.

These were decisions made during a special Covid-19 meeting chaired this morning by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin with senior Cabinet members at the Prime Minister’s Office.

Apart from tightening SOPs, it was agreed in the meeting that border patrols be increased to prevent unauthorised entry of foreign nationals.

“Since the spreading of the virus was caused by foreign nationals who entered into the country illegally, we have decided to increase border patrols and intensify the Ops Benteng,” Ismail Sabri said.

Prior to tightening of the SOPs, the government had put in place a ban on inter-district travel in Sabah.

This came after a targeted enhanced movement control order (EMCO) imposed on four districts — Lahad Datu, Tawau, Kunak and Semporna.

The decision was made after these areas recorded 1,195 Covid-19 cases from September 1 to 27.

Ismail Sabri also said 241 people were arrested for flouting SOPs enforced during the recovery MCO yesterday.

Out of that number, 41 were remanded, two made bail and 198 issued compounds.


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