Malaysia's Prime Minister Tan Sri Dato' Muhyiddin Yassin yesterday announced that the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) will be extended for a period of four weeks, till 9 June 2020.

This means that all rules and SOPs implemented during the CMCO will remain in force until 9 June 2020. From time to time, the Government will share updates about any changes to the rules or list of sectors allowed to operate.

"Although we have achieved many positive developments in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic, our efforts have not been completely successful. Steps still need to be taken to combat this outbreak," PM Muhyiddin said.

With a number of festivals occurring during this period, the PM reminds that the prohibition of inter-state movement is still in force and returning to hometowns across state borders is not allowed.

However, travelling to visit close neighbours and family living in the same state is allowed, with a cap of a maximum of 20 people per gathering at one time.

Additionally, during the festive period, PM Muhyiddin reminds Malaysians that every family should practice social distancing, wearing masks, and good personal hygiene - such as using hand sanitizer and keeping the house clean. 

The Ministry of Health added that crowded places should be avoided and safe distancing should be practised when chatting with guests 

In his national address, PM Muhyiddin also shared details regarding religious congregations, Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) payments, and couples separated by state borders due to work.

  • Discussion on SOPs to resume religious congregations
    Under the Movement Control Order (MCO), religious activities and assemblies in places of worship have not been allowed. However, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department is currently finalising the SOPs required for religious congregation to resume, PM Muhyiddin said. 
  • BPN payments
    The government on Saturday (9 May 2020) approved 2.3mn BPN applications, including new applications and appeals, the PM said. This involves a total expenditure of RM1.7bn. With that, the total number of recipients of BPN so far has reached 10.6mn, involving payments totalling RM11bn.
  • Flexibility for couples to travel across state borders
    For couples separated by state borders due to work, the Government will give some flexibility for them to travel across state borders to meet. Applications can be made through the Gerak Malaysia app or via police stations. "I appeal to the Sabah and Sarawak state governments to give some leeway for this,” added PM Muhyiddin.

PM Muhyiddin concluded his address by reminding Malaysians that with the increasing amount of people starting to leave their homes for work, the risk of infection is also increasing. 

With the next few weeks being critical in the fight against COVID-19, he urges Malaysians to follow the SOPs set by the Government for the next few weeks. He warns that in the event of a significant increase in cases during this period, the Government will be forced to reinstate the MCO for affected areas.

Photo / Screengrab of PM Muhyiddin's speech