Movement curbs in Klang Valley extended as cases hit another high

A medical worker preparing to administer coronavirus swab tests outside a clinic in Kajang, Selangor, yesterday. Malaysia saw 1,240 Covid-19 cases yesterday, with seven new fatalities, bringing the total to 27,805 cases with 236 deaths. PHOTO: REUTER
Although all economic activities are allowed under the CMCO, social activities and cross-district travel are barred.PHOTO: REUTERS

The conditional movement curbs in several parts of Malaysia will be extended for another two weeks after another record number of cases were reported yesterday.

The decision to extend the con-ditional movement control order in the federal territories of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya, as well as the state of Selangor, was made based on the assessment of the health authorities, said Senior Minister for Security Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

He said officers from the Health Ministry deemed some of these areas as high-risk locations.

"Taking into account this risk, the government has agreed to extend the conditional movement control order (CMCO) in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor for 14 more days, from Oct 27 to Nov 9," he said in a national televised address.

The CMCO in the three areas was first imposed for two weeks on Oct 14 as the country battled a third wave of Covid-19 infections that followed the state election in Sabah last month.

Although all economic activities are allowed under the CMCO, social activities and cross-district travel are barred.

Only two individuals are allowed to leave a house at a time. Those who have to cross district lines for work are required to show their work passes.

The restrictions affect some 7.6 million residents in the Klang Valley, which is made up of Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and some districts of Selangor. The area accounts for 23 per cent of Malaysia's 32 million population.

The entire state of Sabah has also been under the CMCO since Oct 13.

On Sunday, the government announced that it was extending it in the state for another two weeks, until Nov 9.

The latest wave of infections was caused by the two weeks of campaigning that preceded the Sept 26 state polls, which drew politicians and election workers from all over Malaysia to the country's easternmost state. At that time, Sabah was already hit by a spike in Covid-19 cases after an outbreak at a detention centre for illegal migrants.

The politicians and election workers have been blamed for carrying the virus back with them to Peninsular Malaysia and Sarawak.

Malaysia reported 1,240 Covid-19 cases yesterday, with seven new fatalities. The previous record high of 1,228 cases was reported last Saturday. To date, Malaysia's cumulative tally of cases stands at 27,805, with 236 deaths.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 27, 2020, with the headline 'Movement curbs in Klang Valley extended as cases hit another high'. Print Edition | Subscribe