Senior citizen from Melaka is 15th person to die from coronavirus in Malaysia

A worker spraying disinfectant at a mosque, which is closed during the movement control order due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 coronavirus, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on March 24, 2020.
A worker spraying disinfectant at a mosque, which is closed during the movement control order due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 coronavirus, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on March 24, 2020.PHOTO: REUTERS

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The Covid-19 coronavirus has claimed the life of a 71-year-old man from Melaka, the 15th death from the virus in Malaysia.

Malaysia's health ministry director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah said that the man had come into contact with another Covid-19 positive person who had attended an Islamic religious gathering organised by the Tabligh missionary group at a mosque in the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur.

The majority of Malaysia's cases are linked to the gathering held between Feb 27 and March 1.

The man's death was the 10th linked to the Tabligh cluster.

Datuk Dr Noor Hisham said the deceased had a history of chronic disease.

He was admitted to the Sultanah Fatimah Specialist Hospital in Muar, Johor, on March 18 and died on Tuesday (March 24) morning.

Malaysia has the highest number of coronavirus cases in South-east Asia.

As of Monday (March 23), a total of 1,518 coronavirus cases had been detected in the country, with nearly 60 per cent of these linked to the Islamic religious gathering.

The country rolled out its 14-day restricted movement order, which will remain until March 31 on Wednesday after a drastic spike in cases.

 
 
 
 

Meanwhile, Malaysian police have arrested 28 people for failing to comply with the restricted movement order (RMO),  as authorities begin to take stern action against violators.

Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that 695 investigation papers have been opened and 46 cases are under investigation since the order was enforced on Wednesday (March 18) last week. Tuesday (March 24) was the seventh day of the 14-day RMO.

"We have warned the public that the police will go from advising them to stay at home to taking action against those who do not.

"Our advice is that the public comply with the MCO to avoid action and arrest by the police," he said on Tuesday, referring to movement control order, another name for the RMO.

Datuk Ismal said the special committee looking into non-health-related matters pertaining to Covid-19 was also briefed by the Communications and Multimedia Ministry on action taken against those who spread fake news.

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission has to date, investigated 85 cases related to fake news on Covid-19.

Six individuals have been taken to court. "For those who are in the habit of creating fake news, I warn you to stop," said Mr Ismail.