PM announces third MCO extension until May 12

Modified 23 Apr 2020, 2:05 pm

CORONAVIRUS | Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has announced that the movement control order (MCO) will be extended until May 12.

This is the third extension for the partial lockdown since March 18 to flatten the Covid-19 infection curve.

The second extension was slated to end on April 28.

The number of Covid-19 infection cases have been on the decline, registering double digits for the past week. However, experts have warned that lifting the restrictions too early could lead to a resurgence of cases.

Muhyiddin said he did not reject the possibility that the order would be extended again.

"This means ladies and gentlemen, that you may not be able to celebrate Hari Raya at your kampung.

"You still can't work, except for those in approved sectors, and businesses are still not allowed to fully open," he said in a Ramadhan address tonight.

However, the prime minister said if Covid-19 cases continue to be on a steady decline the government may consider gradually easing restrictions for several sectors.

"This includes the social sector (such as health and education) to allow you to live more comfortably.

"The National Security Council is working on a comprehensive plan regarding this," he said.

Meanwhile, Muhyiddin also reiterated that the government is working on a plan to systematically allow students stuck in campuses to return home, without causing unnecessary congestion.

He said students will also be subject to a health screening before they can return home.

As for those who have returned to their hometowns right before the MCO began, the prime minister said that the government is still studying whether or not they can go back home as well.

He encouraged those who are stuck in their hometowns to inform the police of their intent to go back home so that the government can have the necessary data to plan out a potential exodus.

Muhyiddin's announcement tonight coincides with the start of Ramadhan.

The prime minister said Muslims must learn to look into the positives.

"Maybe this is Allah giving us a chance to truly perform the act of fasting," he said.

He said it is ok to miss out on Ramadhan bazaars, and not eating your favourite kuih, or performing tarawih prayers in congregation at mosques.

He said this is a time for Muslims to pray with their families instead.

Muhyiddin describe the fight against Covid-19 as a jihad (holy struggle) that Muslims must continue with during the holy month.

Meanwhile, the prime minister said the government is also working on plans to revive the economy, including granting more exemptions for certain sectors to operate under strict regulations.

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