The Minister of Council of National Security (also known as Majlis Keselamatan Negara) has just announced that the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures Within Infected Local Areas) No.5 Regulations 2020 has been enforced and will have effect from 4th of May until 12 Mayth of May 2020 and Regulation No.4 is revoked today.
The No.5 Regulation is required to ensure that there is no confusion after the implementation of the SOP by the Prime Minister on May 1st, 2020, which otherwise will cause great contradiction.
1. No 10km-Restriction
This would mean that there is no restriction of traveling within 10km as imposed by the previous regulations as such restriction has been removed in the new No.5 Regulations and has been confirmed by Dato Sri Ismail Sabri during the live broadcast a while ago (2pm, today). However, it is not allowed to travel interstate, except for those who are stranded in any places during the first phase of MCO, for a sole trip to return to their places. Hence any travel or journey other than as allowed would be an offence.
2. More than Essential needs
The New Regulation (No.5) has also removed the restriction of travel for essential needs. The removal is required as the SOP has allowed operation of many sectors of the economy as part of the "restarting" economy policy taken by the Government especially after the advice provided by the health experts from China during their official visit.
3. 3 passengers instead of 1
The New Regulation allows a person driving a private vehicle to carry nor more than 3 passengers and such passengers shall be persons staying in the same house as him. This would mean that car-pooling with friends or colleagues who are not staying in the same house is prohibited.
Take note that a driver of a hire car, taxi cab, airport taxi cab, limousine taxi cab or e-hailing vehicle shall not carry more than 2 passengers for each journey. (learn about the new SOP applicable to public transportation here)
4. No Gathering?
The New Regulation (No.5) prohibits any person in any way participate or be involved in any gathering or procession, whether for economic, religious, educational and learning, sports, recreational, social or cultural purposes. However, this Regulation does not provide a definition as to what amounts to gathering. The vagueness of this crucial word may again spark controversy and will further cause confusion. The only exception to this rule is that a person may gather or involved in a gathering for a funeral on the condition that the attendance of such a funeral shall not exceed 20. The further reading of the exception to the gathering rule would mean that any number not exceeding 20 would amount to 'gathering' but this shed very little light as to the practical meaning.
5. Prohibited Activities
The New Regulation is to compliment the SOP issued for restarting of the economy and hence would not allow any prohibitive activities listed in Schedule 1 of the Regulations (reproduced below):-
Entertainment, leisure, and recreational activities which may cause a crowd to gather.
Activities in relation to religious, cultural, and art festivities which may cause a crowd to gather.
Business activities which may cause a crowd to gather.
Activities at a centralized labour quarter, employees' hostel and dormitory which may cause a crowd to gather.
Fitting of clothes, using fitting rooms in clothes stores, trying on fashion accessories in stores, and providing cosmetic testers in stores.
Services in barbershops and beauty salons.
Filming movies, dramas, documentaries and advertisements.
Cruise ship activities, tourism services and services at accommodation premises under the Tourism Industry Act 1992.
Installation and maintenance of machinery activities (lift, escalator, boiler and others) and tower crane at construction sites in groups which may cause a gathering.
Theory and Practical Examinations for Shot-firer (Blasting) for mining and quarrying industry.
Certification for agri commodities
Activities of the financial services industry and banking, involving sales and marketing not within the premises of financial institutions and banks, or in public places.
Commercial activities involving sales and marketing not within business premises, or in public places, not including food business at food courts hawker centres, food stalls, food trucks and the like.
5. Movement WITHIN Infected Local Areas
This Regulation allows person who is already in an infected local area (subjected to an enhanced movement control order) to be around but it prohibits any person to exit or to enter the area unless such person is providing healthcare and medical services or is given permission by an authorized officer.
6.Movement BETWEEN Infected Local Areas
This Regulation prohibits a person to move from one infected local area to another infected local area except to and from work, and in relation to a person who is stranded at any place due to control of movement under the Act, to return home. If movement is required, that person shall obtain prior written permission of the police officer in charge of the police station nearest to his home.
Even if the New Regulation has allowed greater movement, but it is our social responsibility to adhere to all rules, regulations, protocols, and to practice the new norm such as maintaining social distance. It is advisable to reduce any traveling.
Anyone who contravenes the Regulations shall be liable to a fine not exceeding RM1,000.00 and if is brought to court, the Court shall be empowered to impose the fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both.
There is a total of 122 cases (52 imported cases) reported on 3.5.2020 with 2 new fatalities on 2.5.2020 (82-year-old) and 3.5.2020 (64-year-old)