Has the movement control order (MCO), which began on March 18 and now extended to April 14, been effective at keeping people at home or where they are? Despite public compliance said to be at around 95% and 110 arrests having being made for flouting the order, this doesn’t seem to be the case, at least not in the Klang Valley today, judging by the increased levels of traffic reported earlier in certain parts.
Roadblocks have been put in place to curb unnecessary movement by the public, and it was reported that 163,487 vehicles were checked by the police in 1,719 areas yesterday. That, however, hasn’t deterred many from attempting the drive out beyond getting food and supplies nearby.
Some of the excuses provided to cops at roadblocks in recent days have been quite astounding. These have ranged from needing to go to the office to water the plant, sending a cake and buying a newspaper to going out of the way to seek out a special dish or to buy tools. Some have even been stopped for having more than one occupant in a car.
Well, there’s news for you, folks, because it’s going to get tougher to do that soon, as The Star reports. According to defence minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, stricter regulations will be enforced during the second phase of the MCO to ensure the measures taken to break the Covid-19 chain of infection achieves the desired goals.
He said under the ongoing first phase of the MCO, people have been allowed to move around, with some restrictions, but this could soon change. “The national security council (NSC) has been asked to draft a new standard operating procedure (SOP) for phase two of the MCO, where the rules and regulations are tighter and more stringent than what is in place now. So after this, there will be more restrictions imposed,” he said.
He did not reveal in detail what the new measures would be, but indicated that the new regulations might involve the people’s movements when it comes to shopping and going out to buy food. He added that the NSC would present the new SOP this Saturday, March 28.
Once again, we remind everyone that if it is absolutely necessary for you to get provisions, medical supplies and food, please make it fast and limit the distance travelled for those purposes, and remember the one person per car rule. You can try switching to delivery services for food as much as possible, or at least on alternate occasions, in a bid to heed the government’s call to just stay at home. Very soon, you might have no choice but to, all because of those who have refused to comply.