Covid-19 cases in the country remained above the 3,000 mark as Malaysia entered the sixth day of the second movement control order.
In a statement, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the country recorded 3,306 new Covid-19 cases on Monday (Jan 18).
This takes the tally up to 161,740.
Four people also died due to the coronavirus, raising Malaysia’s Covid-19 death toll to 605.
The country also discharged 2,293 Covid-19 patients, which means 122,344 people have recovered.
The number of people with active Covid-19 infections in Malaysia has gone up to 38,791.
Currently, 226 patients are in intensive care, with 94 requiring ventilator support.
A total of 3,339 Covid-19 cases were recorded on Sunday (Jan 17) with 15 of them being imported cases, says the Health Ministry.
There were also seven deaths recorded, bringing the total number of deaths to 601.
The ministry said since the beginning of the pandemic to date, there were a total of 158,434 positive cases in the country.
The Health Ministry also said some 2,676 Covid-19 patients were also discharged, bringing the total number of recovered cases to 120,051.
Currently, there are 240 patients in the intensive care unit, with 93 of them requiring ventilator support.
The Ministry of Health (MoH) announced that there were 2,985 new Covid-19 cases in the country today.
This represents a slight dip from yesterday’s record high of 3,309 infections.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham also announced four more Covid-19 fatalities as of today.
“Malaysia recorded 2,985 new daily cases today, bringing the total number of positive Covid-19 cases in Malaysia to 144,518,” he said during his daily press briefing in Putrajaya today.
Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin (pix) has been confirmed positive for Covid-19 based on test results received this morning.
A statement issued by his office said Zahidi underwent Covid-19 screening test on returning to Kuala Lumpur from Penang on Monday.
Zahidi has been taken to Hospital Sungai Buloh for further treatment in accordance with guidelines set by the Health Ministry.
“Zahidi is now in stable condition and apologises for any inconvenience caused. He also prays that Allah SWT will make it easier for all who are involved,” the statement said.
It said Zahidi had taken another Covid-19 test on Dec 25 last year which had turned out negative.
Shopping malls, hypermarkets and departmental stores are allowed to operate during the two-week Movement Control Order (MCO) period now enforced in five states and Federal Territories.
Other trade and distribution activities allowed are pharmacies, convenience stores, mini marts, laundrettes except self-service laundromats, restaurants, furniture stores, gold shops, electrical goods and electronics stores, book stores, hardware shops, pet shops, workshops, car sales centres and petrol stations.
Owners of commercial vehicles are not required to request for an endorsement letter from the Ministry of Transport (MoT) to operate during the movement control order (MCO), said MoT today.
“Restrictions will not be placed on commercial vehicles operating during the MCO,” it said in a statement.
Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on Monday (Jan 11) announced that the MCO would be enforced in six states ― Penang, Selangor, the Federal Territories (Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan), Melaka, Johor and Sabah ― from January 13 until January 26.
Those who are stranded in their hometowns with valid reasons after the Movement Control Order (MCO) comes into force at midnight tonight will be allowed to make interstate travel to return home this week, said Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador.
He said police understand that many people might have gone out of town to visit family members or for vacation and could not return before the ban on interstate travel comes into force.
The police have set up several roadblocks here and closed several roads due to the movement control order, says Gombak OCPD Asst Comm Arifai Tarawe.
"We have set up a roadblock along KM14 of the Kuala Lumpur - Ipoh road in both directions.
"Roadblocks at the Gombak Toll Plaza have been set in both directions from Bentong and Gombak," he said when contacted on Wednesday (Jan 13).
He also said that roadblocks have also been set up in both directions at the Rawang Toll Plaza from Sungai Buloh and Rawang.
The Sabah police has set up 50 roadblocks at strategic locations, including at inter-district entry and exit routes in the state for the enforcement of the 14-day movement control order (MCO) beginning last night.
Sabah Head of Internal Security and Public Order, ACP Khalid Saion said this was to ensure the public complied with all regulations at the prescribed standard operating procedures (SOP) set by the government in an effort to break the chain of the Covid-19 transmission in the state.
He said about 4,000 security personnel, including from the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM), the Malaysian Volunteer Department (Rela) and the Malaysian Civil Defence Force (APM) would be on duty at the 24-hour roadblocks.
Struggling to stay afloat, bus operators nationwide hope the government will extend its Employee Retention Program (ERP) so they don’t have to let go more of their staff during the latest Covid-19 lockdown.
Malaysian Bus Operators Association president Datuk Mohd Asfar Ali told Utusan Malaysia that many of its members have suffered drastic drops to their earnings over the past year, adding that 99 per cent of bookings have been cancelled following the new movement control order (MCO) that starts today.
The office of the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) Melaka limits the number of purchases for some high demand items such as white bread, chicken, eggs, sugar, flour and rice in all supermarkets and retail shops in the state.
State Unity, Community Relations, Human Resources and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman Datuk Ismail Othman said it was to prevent a similar situation last year from recurring when the country would return to implement the movement control order (MCO) tomorrow.
He said a notification letter on the matter had been distributed to all business premises involving about 8,000 retail traders as well as shopping malls, supermarkets and petrol stations.
Teachers who will begin their duties at schools when the school session starts on Jan 20 are not required to undergo Covid-19 screening but have to strictly adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOP) to curb the pandemic.
Senior Minister (Education) Dr Radzi Jidin said he was confident that strict compliance with the SOP by all quarters could reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission and ensure that the teaching and learning sessions are held in a safe environment.
“The existing health system capacity which is inadequate and limited also prevents the implementation of Covid-19 screening on teachers. Therefore, strict compliance with the SOP is really important,” he said in a news conference on the operation of education institutions under the ministry, here today.
Malaysia recorded the highest number of daily Covid-19 cases when 3,309 cases were reported today, taking the total number of active cases with infectivity potential to 30,390, said Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.
Of the new cases, six were imported while the remaining 3,303 were local transmissions.
“Four fatalities were also reported today while the total infection tally now stands at 141,533,” he said on his official Twitter posting today.
The previous highest number of daily cases was 3,027, which was recorded on Jan 7.
The Health Ministry has detected 11 new Covid-19 clusters, bringing the total number of those still active to 261.
Seven of the clusters are in the Klang Valley, with three in Selangor, four in Kuala Lumpur and one in Putrajaya, with five of them linked to workplaces.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah (pic) said the Jalan Manan cluster in Klang, Selangor, has 83 confirmed cases so far.
Dr Noor Hisham said the cluster is linked to a factory in Jalan Haji Abdul Manan, which is off Jalan Meru in Klang.
As the increasing number of Covid-19 infections continues to overwhelm the country, not all individuals identified as close contacts may undergo tests.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham said the ministry will prioritise swab tests for individuals with symptoms first.
“Those who are close contacts to positive cases must undergo quarantine and be isolated.
“The priority for Covid-19 swab tests is given to those who are symptomatic.
“This is because the swab tests may not be able to be given to all, especially in districts or states that are burdened with a high number of cases.
The public is reminded to continue exercising self-discipline in carrying out preventive measures against Covid-19 as the country enters the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) tomorrow.
Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said business operators and customers need to maintain social distancing and good personal hygiene.
He said the police, as well as the task force teams in districts, would focus on standard operating procedure compliance at business premises and public places.
Johor PKR deputy chief Jimmy Puah Wee Tse today questioned why Covid-19 patients from Johor are sent to the Malaysia Agricultural Expo Park Serdang (MAEPS) in Selangor for quarantine and treatment.
He said it is inconvenient for Covid-19 patients from Johor to be sent to Selangor as it very far.
“I understand that starting yesterday, new (Covid-19) patients from Johor will be sent to MAEPS in Selangor to undergo a quarantine process and seek further treatment.
The enhanced movement control order for two localities in Johor will be extended from Jan 16 to 29 as there is still a high number of active cases, says Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob (pic).
The localities are Kejora Juara workers hostel in Muar and Westlite workers hostel in Senai.
Ismail Sabri said that the National Security Council, in a special meeting, had agreed to extend the enhanced MCO for the Kejora Juara workers' hostel as there are still 1,404 active cases there.
An old folks' home in Ipoh, Perak has been placed under lockdown after 13 people, including seven senior citizens, tested positive for Covid-19.
Others who tested positive at the Anning Old Folks' Home include six staff members.
The matter was confirmed by Anning Old Folks' Home chairman Marcus How Kok Peng.
"As part of the exercise to prevent the spread of the virus at old folks' homes around the state, representatives from the state Health Department came to conduct screening on all of 36 senior citizens and 24 staff at our centre on Sunday (Jan 10).
All parks in Penang, including Botanic Gardens, will be closed as of Friday (Jan 15).
This follows some confusion when the movement control order was re-imposed on Wednesday (Jan 13) and some public recreational parks in the state remained open for people to go jogging alone.
State youth and sports committee chairman Soon Lip Chee said in a statement on Thursday (Jan 14) that the state will take heed of the order from National Security Council and close all public parks in the state.
With 334 positive Covid-19 cases as of Dec 3 in Kulim, Kedah, the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) imposed in the district will be extended another two weeks.
Initially scheduled to end tomorrow, Senior Defense Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said it will be extended until Dec 20.
He said the Health Ministry's risk assessment done on the district found the infectivity rate to still be high.
The Perlis Manpower Department is conducting a special operation beginning today until February 28 to ensure all 2,562 registered foreign workers in the state undergo Covid-19 screening tests.
Its director, Iskandar Jassa, said the move was taken in order to contain the pandemic among the community.
“Today, we visited 11 employers and found only one of them had conducted Covid-19 screening for its workers,” he told reporters here, today.
He urged all employers to do so immediately or face the consequences.
All staff of the Bentong Prison and their family members are to be quarantined until the Covid-19 screening process is done with.
This is after health authorities identified the Tembok Mempaga cluster yesterday, the Pahang disaster management committee said in a statement today, adding that the move was necessary to ensure there are no transmissions within the local community.
Kelantan recorded an all-time-high tally of 150 daily Covid-19 cases today.
State health director Datuk Dr Zaini Hussin said Kota Baru registered the highest number of cases at 50, followed by Gua Musang (27) and Pasir Mas (21).
He said the 150 cases take the cumulative tally of infections in the state to 2,133.
Dr Zaini added that 79 of the 150 cases are from close contacts, 45 from clusters, while the rest were detected via screening tests.
A total of four Terengganu state executive council members and another state assemblyman in the state are now undergoing quarantine at their homes while waiting for the results of their Covid-19 tests, a report has said.
All four state executive council members are also state assemblymen in PAS-ruled Terengganu.
In the report by Harian Metro last night, this was confirmed by one of those undergoing quarantine — Bukit Tunggal state assemblyman Alias Razak who is also the exco chairing the local government, housing, health and environment committee.
Alias said the five of them — including himself — were close contacts to a staff member at the Wisma Darul Iman who had tested positive for Covid-19.
A total of 83 close contacts of two Melaka Police Headquarters Contingent (IPK) personnel, who tested positive for Covid-19 last week, have been identified, said Melaka Police chief Datuk Abdul Majid Mohd Ali.
He said the two women personnel, a sub-inspector and a civil servant aged 30 and 53, are from the logistics division of the IPK.
“The close contacts who have been identified comprised officers, personnel as well as family members and 45 of them have been ordered to undergo home quarantine.
Thirteen people were detained by police for defying standard operating procedures (SOPs) of the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) at food premises here last night.
Acting Labuan police chief DSP Mohd Ibrahim Mohd Ghani said all of them, aged between 28 and 48 years, were compounded RM1,000 each, under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures within the local Infected Areas) Regulations 2020.
Seventy-nine per cent of intensive care unit (ICU) beds in Sabah hospitals are occupied by Covid-19 patients.
State Covid-19 spokesperson Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said despite this, the Health Ministry will do its best to accommodate and provide the best healthcare for the people.
"There are two major hospitals in Kota Kinabalu, one has 36 ICU beds and the other has six beds; Tawau has 32; Sandakan 18; Lahad Datu 13; and Keningau 10.
"There are 115 ICU beds in total and 91 patients are being treated at ICUs to date, with 23 of them needing ventilators," he said in a virtual press conference.
Sarawak Patriots Association (SPA) chairman Datuk John Lau Pang Heng today urged the state Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) not to designate longhouses as quarantine centres for those returning from high-risk areas in Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah.
He said the Pasai Siong cluster should serve as a lesson on why longhouses should not be used as quarantine centres for persons-under-investigation (PUIs) for Covid-19.
Lau said many people that he talked to had agreed that an index case in the Pasai Siong cluster should not have been allowed to be quarantined at longhouse since she had returned from Johor Baru via Kuala Lumpur, as both are states considered high Covid-19 risk areas.