Compulsory test for foreign workers, employers to bear cost

The decision is due to rise in new positive Covid-19 cases recently where majority comprises of foreign workers


ALL foreign workers returning to work during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) must undergo Covid-19 tests.

Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the decision was made in the wake of the rise in new positive Covid-19 cases in the country over the past few days, where majority comprises of foreign workers.

“They have to undergo the swab tests and their employers are to foot the bill.

“We will start this with Kuala Lumpur and Selangor,” Ismail Sabri told the press during his daily briefing in Putrajaya yesterday, adding that this procedure is applicable for all operating sectors.

There are about seven million migrants living and working in the country with only half of them registered.

On Saturday, 27 new Covid-19 cases were detected at a construction site on Jalan Ampang in Kuala Lumpur. The construction site has now been closed.

Under the CMCO, which began yesterday, most industries can reopen, but any spike of Covid-19 cases will result in the closing down of the affected area.

Malaysia went back to recording three digits new Covid-19 cases over two consecutive days, after the announcement of the CMCO.

On Sunday, there were 122 new infections reported, bringing the tally to 6,298. Of the 122 new cases, 70 were local transmissions, while 52 were imported.

Ismail Sabri said under CMCO, business owners and employers can opt to not run their businesses and for those who opt to run their business operations, it must comply with the CMCO guideline.

Separately, many laws have also been eased under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act (Act 342) to give ample room for the implementation of CMCO.

For example, four people from the same household can now travel in a car, while the 10km travel radius has also been lifted.

Ismail Sabri said whenever the MCO is extended, it will be gazetted and the previous one will be null and void.

The MCO has seen three extensions since March 18.

“For CMCO, we have made changes as some of the regulations have been relaxed. These changes have been gazetted. Therefore, rules applied throughout the fourth phase of the MCO are now null and void and are replaced with this new one.

“Authorities cannot take action if a car has four passengers because this regulation has been gazetted.

“I hope there is no confusion. This regulation is applicable nationwide,” he added.

He said the enforcement period for the CMCO, like Phase 4 of MCO, is scheduled to end on May 12.