State govts urged to follow SOPs set, tighten if necessary


THE state governments have been urged to follow the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the federal government, to standardise regulations and avoid confusion among the people.

However, Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, said the state governments could tighten the SOPs set by the federal government, if necessary, to facilitate them to control the situation.

“(When) the National Security Council (MKN) sets the SOPs, it should be followed by every state, but we are also of the view that the state governments can use their own discretion based on cases that occur in their respective states.

“I have discussed it with the Ministry of Health that the state governments can impose stricter regulations if necessary. What is not allowed is to relax the SOPs set by the federal government,” he told a press conference on the Movement Control Order (MCO), Conditional MCO and Recovery MCO in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

On Sunday, the Kelantan government announced the cancellation of Ramadhan and Aidilfitri bazaars state-wide, even though the federal government had earlier approved the opening of such bazaars this year.

Meanwhile, Ismail Sabri said people who refused to take the Covid-19 vaccine could not be punished because it was not mandatory. It is an option for the public.

However, he called on the people to take the vaccine in the interest of their health and their community.

He further explained that thus far the government has yet to discuss vaccination for people wanting to go abroad, and the matter is subject to the country they want to visit.

He cited an example of the Saudi Arabian government which is likely to make the Covid-19 vaccine compulsory for pilgrims wanting to perform haj this year, and the matter is still under discussion.