Inter-district travel in Phase 3, says Ismail Sabri

Malaysia will remain in the 1st phase of the NRP — or FMCO — until 3 main objectives are achieved

by NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK / pic by BERNAMA

THE inter-district movement will be allowed in the Phase 3 of the National Recovery Plan (NRP), Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob (picture) said.

“Cross-district movement is allowed throughout Phase 3, while cross-state movements are still not allowed.

“Dine-in at the restaurant is limited to two people per table with adherence to physical distancing,” he said in a statement yesterday.

The statement also detailed that Malaysia would remain in the first phase of the NRP — or the total lockdown — until three main objectives are achieved.

The criteria include recording below 4,000 cases for seven consecutive days, having the rate of bed use in the intensive care unit (ICU) stands at moderate levels, as well as 10% vaccination rates for populations that have received two complete doses.

The move from the first to second phase would take into consideration the aforementioned indicators.

However, some changes would take place starting today, such as the increase in food and beverage operational hours from 6am until 10pm from the previous 8am to 8pm.

“In Phase 1 of NRP, the general standard operating procedures of the Full Movement Control Order (FMCO) still apply, in which all social and economic activities are not allowed, except the necessary sectors listed in a positive list issued by the National Security Council,” he said.

In the second phase, the sectors allowed for operations include the manufacturing sectors — namely automotive, ceramic, furniture for exports, rubber, metal and steel as well as cement.

Similarly, sectors in business and distribution such as stationeries, computers and telecommunications, electrical, car wash and barbers will be allowed for operations from 8am to 8pm.

“Cross-district and cross-state movements are still not allowed except for movement of school teachers and students of examination classes.

“Interstate movement for long-distance couples is allowed for emergency and special cases, only with the approval of the Royal Police Department,” he said.

The third phase would see the allowance for all economic sectors except for high-risk sectors, namely spa, pedicure and manicure, as well as pubs and nightclubs.

He added that public transport such as taxis and e-hailing services, including private vehicles, are allowed to have total capacity increased to three people, including drivers.

“Night markets, farmers markets, weekly markets and guest markets are also allowed to operate in accordance with current SOPs.

“Beauty salons are also allowed to operate during Phase 3 by adhering to the strict  SOPs that have been set,” he said.

The third phase would also see the opening of educational institutions, including schools and tertiary studies institutions.

“Social activities are still not allowed during Phase 3.

“However, the flexibility to receive guests or visitors at the residence is limited to 10 people at a time,” he said.

In addition, Phase 3 would see the allowance for domestic tourism activities, which is still subject to current risk assessments and strict SOPs.

Lastly, the fourth phase can only be implemented when the cases are low, the public health system is in a safe state and the vaccination programme has reached a herd immunity level.

“This last phase will allow us all to get back to norms of daily life which almost all sectors are allowed in full subject to existing SOPs that have been set,” he said.

Malaysia recorded 5,586 new Covid-19 cases yesterday, with the highest count coming from Selangor with 2,212.

This is followed by Kuala Lumpur with 628 cases, Sarawak (513) and Negri Sembilan (501), while the least recorded state is Perlis with no cases, followed by four from Putrajaya and 16 in Terengganu.

Health DG Tan Sri Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the count has increased the cumulative confirmed cases to 734,048.

“A total of 60 cases were recorded yesterday involving 20 cases from Selangor, 16 from Kuala Lumpur, six in Kelantan, five in Johor, four in Negri Sembilan, three in Sarawak and two each in Melaka and Pahang, as well as one each in Kedah and Labuan,” he said.

Currently, active cases stand at 61,395 and out of the total, 886 require treatment in the ICUs and 446 in need of the ventilator.

According to his update, a total of 4,777 patients also recovered from Covid-19 as of yesterday.

He also noted on the people being affected by the pandemic in terms of emotional and mental health.

“Among the mental health-related problems identified are anxiety, restlessness, feelings of sadness, depression, as well as loss of hope to continue living.

“The Psychosocial Support Helpline established on March 25, 2020, found that most callers need emotional support, as well as counselling,” he said.

He added that healthcare and frontline workers are also experiencing stress and burnout.

“This happens when they have to work with a commitment in excess of 100% for a long period of time.

“This situation has resulted in physical and mental fatigue that can disrupt the concentration and productivity of frontline workers in providing services to the community,” he said.