No open houses, only receptions this CNY

Hosts can only receive invited guests to visit their houses from Jan 31 to Feb 15


NO OPEN houses are allowed for this year’s Chinese New Year (CNY) celebration.

Instead, hosts can only receive invited guests to visit their houses from Jan 31 to Feb 15 (Chap Goh Mei).

National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique explained that CNY visits should only be limited to a 50% capacity at one time with social distancing observation.

“The reception cannot be held in multiple sessions and is not open to the public,” she said during a joint press conference with Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong yesterday.

Corporations and associations are allowed to proceed with their annual CNY celebrations in halls and restaurants, but these are also strictly closed for invited guests only.

Wee said those celebrating the festivities are not allowed to have continuous, rotational, exchanged or open invitations for the general public. The 50% capacity is to enable easier social distancing and it is applicable to everyone.

“The standard operating procedures (SOPs) announcement is good news to the Chinese community. While we can enjoy the celebration, it is important that we continue to adhere to the SOPs for the safety and health of everyone,” he said.

Also allowed are family reunion dinners on Jan 31, while lion, dragon and tiger dances will be subjected to the SOPs under the creative industry, which have been set by the Multimedia and Communications Ministry.

Prayers in temples are allowed on Feb 1-2, regulated by the SOPs under Phase 4 of the National Recovery Plan.

Temple managements will be responsible for monitoring and ensuring that worshippers adhere to the SOPs, where they are required to open a health screening counter, only allow those who are fully vaccinated, undergo contact tracing, prepare hand sanitisers and make wearing masks mandatory.

Worshippers will be required to scan the MySejahtera QR code or write their contact information, scan their body temperature, use hand sanitisers and observe the 1m physical distance.

The guidelines also apply to those performing the Hokkien Clan prayers on Feb 8-9, as well as the Chap Goh Mei prayers.