With the number of cases hit 3,000 on 7 January 2021, the Prime Minister has announced the implementation of Movement Control Order (MCO) 2.0 effective 13 January 2021, Wednesday for 2 weeks. As compared to MCO 1.0 back in March 2020, the number of cases per day was only 100-200 but since October 2020, Malaysia began recording 4-digit daily cases.
MCO is taking place not to stop Covid-19 but to slow down the alarming spread and prevent it from spreading even more with eased restrictions. During the 2 weeks of MCO, Johoreans together with people living in another 4 states and 3 Federal Territories (Penang, Selangor, Melaka, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, Sabah and Labuan) can only travel 10KM radius from the home to get essential supplies. Only 2 persons per household are permitted to travel for the said purpose. Only 2 persons per vehicle for any purpose of heading out from home. Please be reminded that roadblocks will be mounted again. There goes without saying, no inter-state travel is allowed and same as MCO 1.0, inter-district is not allowed either. For those confused with districts in Johor, there are a total of 10 districts namely Johor Bahru, Batu Pahat, Kluang, Kota Tinggi, Kulai, Mersing, Muar, Pontian, Segamat and Tangkak. Iskandar Puteri is within the Johor Bahru district.
What Are the Restrictions?
There will be no gathering allowed, including formal and casual events such as personal celebrations, festival gatherings, meetings and training. Sports events would have to cancel as well, including those games that have already started. Everyone is strongly encouraged to work from home. For those who have to work from the office, only 30% of the management team is allowed with SOPs in place. There are only 5 industries permitted to operate during MCO 2.0, which those not included in essential services will have to comply with work from home for all employees. The 5 essential services are manufacturing, construction, services, trade and distribution, plantation and commodities.
For food and beverage businesses, all are allowed to operate with only takeaways and food deliveries. Dine-in is strictly prohibited. Fortunately in this era, we can order food online and get it delivered. We should be thankful to all the frontline workers serving us during MCOs. They are taking the risk for everyone in the country.
Supermarkets, healthcare (including pharmacies) and banks are operating with SOPs in place. Go out only when necessary as there are many online options available. We are also reminded to not overstock with essential goods at home. Supply is sufficient and replenished daily. For religious activities, only 5 mosque or houses of worship committee members can be at premises. Some can be tense during MCO. To stay both physical and mentally healthy during the MCO, we can go for outdoor recreational activities with physical distancing and of course, not in a group. For those who used to exercise in groups such as dance classes, can do that at home with plenty of mobile apps available.
Prevention and Control of Infectious Disease Act 1988 (Act 342) has the right to fine a maximum of RM 1,000 if anyone violates these rules. Embrace the new norms – wear a mask, physical distancing, use hand sanitizer, wash hands frequently and lastly Stay At Home.