by ASILA JALIL / pic by BERNAMA
THE Health Ministry (MoH) is recommending for the government to not hold elections, while Covid-19 cases are on the rise.
Health DG Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said should there be a need for an election, it should be done in a safe manner to minimise infection.
“What is more important is the compliance of the standard operating procedures (SOPs).
“We have learned this from Sabah and hopefully we do not repeat the consequences of elections in other states,” he said in his daily press briefing yesterday.
He said among the things that can be looked into is to ensure that there is no interstate and interdistrict travels.
He also suggested that massive gatherings and house visits should not be held during the campaign period.
“These are the three main issues we need to discuss with the Election Commission. Maybe we can use postal vote or other methods.
“MoH can only give recommendations. If it cannot be avoided and we still need an election under the Constitution, then we must study the SOPs and how to conduct the election while minimising infection,” he said.
Dr Noor Hisham also raised his concern towards the involvement of NGOs who get involved in aiding those affected without informing the MoH.
“If they want to participate, they can join MoH, so we will give them basic training in terms of infection control,” he said.
Malaysia recorded 835 new positive cases yesterday, of which five were imported involving a local and four non-citizens who returned from India, Indonesia, Thailand and Bulgaria.
Of the total, Sabah continued to report the highest number of cases at 410, followed by Negri Sembilan (155), Selangor (125), Labuan (74), Sarawak (16), Penang (13), Perak (11), Kuala Lumpur (9), Johor (8), Kedah (4), Terengganu (4) and Putrajaya (1).
A total of 89 cases were being treated under intensive care, of which 32 required respiratory support.
Two deaths were reported pushing the tally to 238 cases or 0.8% from the total cases.
Both fatalities took place in Tawau involving an 82-year-old Malaysian male and 53-year-old woman who is a non-citizen.
Meanwhile, two new clusters were identified yesterday. Lintas cluster in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, reported six cases while Limbungan custer in Labuan had 20 positive cases.