The government will convene a special Covid-19 meeting tomorrow to discuss further measures needed to contain infections, following the spike in cases to a total of 428 recorded until noon today.
Health Minister Dr Adham Baba said apart from Health Ministry representatives, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and representatives of the Defence Ministry are also expected to attend.
"We (Malaysia) have now entered the late containment phase", he said, in view of the 428 cases recorded so far.
He told reporters this after observing the situation at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex at Bangunan Sultan Iskandar in Johor Bahru today.
Also present was Johor Health Director Dr Aman Rabu and state Health and Environment Committee chairperson R Vidyananthan.
Dr Adham said initial investigations indicated that most of the latest cases were linked to the 'tabligh' rally cluster - the rally had taken place at Masjid Jamek Sri Petaling in Kuala Lumpur, from Feb 27 to March 1.
Dr Adham added that the Health Ministry would invoke section 15 (1) of the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 to track down and enforce health screening on rally participants who have refused to come forward to health authorities for testing.
"The ministry calls on those who were at the Sri Petaling mosque to contact the nearest District Health Office for further action," he said.
The minister added that from Jan 5 until today, a total of 6.8 million people comprising foreigners and Malaysians had undergone health screening at all entry points in Johor, and so far, no positive Covid-19 cases had been detected through the screening.
He also stressed that premises with individuals who have been confirmed to have been infected with Covid-19, should be closed by operators without waiting for instructions from the ministry.