No election to avoid surge of Covid-19 cases, says Health DG

by HARIZAH KAMEL / pic by RAZAK GHAZALI

MALAYSIA is not ready for any election at the moment to avoid rising cases of Covid-19 infection, said Health DG Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

Following the King’s Proclamation of Emergency for Batu Sapi that effectively cancels the by-election for the constituency, Dr Noor Hisham said the Health Ministry (MoH) has expressed concern if there is any type of election from early on.

“Our recommendation is to avoid the election. After what happened in Sabah, we see an increase in cases and issues that arise.

“If possible, it is very important that we prevent another election, so that we can prevent the spread of Covid-19 in our country,” he said in his daily briefing yesterday.

Additionally, the Health DG said MoH has identified the spread of Covid-19 among foreign workers in construction sites and factories and will step up its screening process in the areas involved.

On the country’s Covid-19 situation, new cases were down to three digits with only 660 cases recorded yesterday, including four import cases, bringing the total number of positive cases to 50,390, while the total number of active cases was 12,814.

Sabah recorded 387 cases followed by Selangor with 139 cases. The Klang Valley recorded 173 cases, a decrease of 345 cases from a total of 518 cases reported the day before.

The number of recoveries is now 630, tallying the cumulative number of cases that have fully recovered to 37,254, while the total number of fatalities is 322 following four more deaths yesterday.

To date, there have been 103 cases being treated at the intensive care unit, of which 41 cases require respiratory assistance.

Three clusters have ended namely Kencana cluster, Bah Sintok cluster and Seri Anggerik cluster, while eight clusters were detected.

Sabah has three new clusters namely Sabaru, Tomher and Garden. There is the Seri Pasir cluster in Penang, Besi Demak cluster in Sarawak and Parit Kassan cluster involving Johor and Melaka. In the Klang Valley, there are the Putra-18 cluster and Murni cluster.

Dr Noor Hisham also said the ministry has increased the number of hospital beds for Selangor, Kuala Lumpur (KL) and Putrajaya to almost 14 times from 345 beds to 4,739 beds, following the high rates of bed use due to rising Covid-19 patients in the hospitals.

Separately, Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) might end in a few selected states as early as this Saturday, depending on MoH’s evaluation.

Insya-Allah if there is no increase in cases and it is already considered a green zone, then the CMCO in some states may be terminated,” he said in his daily briefing yesterday.

Meanwhile, the Enhanced MCO (EMCO) in Seberang Perai Prison and housing quarters in Penang is extended for another 14 days until Dec 2.

In Sabah, the EMCO in Tawau Temporary Detention Centre, Sandakan Prison and Taman Wira Prison quarters in Sandakan will be extended for another two weeks from Nov 20 to Dec 3.

In Perak, the EMCO in Zone B and Zone C Taman Meru 2C, Ipoh, will also be extended from tomorrow to Dec 3, involving 2,288 residents and 572 houses.

Ismail Sabri also said Kampung Nahaba and Kampung Tegudon in Kota Belud, Sabah, will undergo the EMCO starting tomorrow to Dec 3, involving 1,740 residents.