SOP for visiting graves, govt waits for approval from Health Ministry, MKN – Ismail Sabri

PUTRAJAYA The standard operating procedure (SOP) for visiting graves during Hari Raya Aidilfitri will only be released if the Health Ministry (KKM) and the National Security Council (MKN) feel there is a need for it, said Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

 

He said for now, the KKM was only advising the public not to visit the graves as is usually done every Hari Raya in a move to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the community.

 

“I do not know if the SOP will be issued or not because it was not discussed in the meeting just now, but as we have said, the MKN and the KKM can always discuss, if they will come up with the SOP, they will inform us, but so far, it is only advice,” he said at the daily press conference on the development of the Movement Control Order (MCO) here today.

 

 

Ismail said the government will also seek advice from the KKM and MKN before releasing the SOP or allowing any activity to be conducted during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) period, including allowing hair salons to be opened.

 

“I have also received appeals from many hair salon operators and associations to be given permission (to resume operations). As of now, (the government) has not discussed it yet and hairdressing is still in the list of prohibited (activities),” he said.

 

On the proposal for action to be taken against parents and guardians who bring children below the age of 12 years to public places, Ismail Sabri said there is currently no SOP or regulation under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases 1988 (Act 342) about it.

 

 

“For now, there is no SOP, no regulation. But as of now, every day, I and the Director-General of Health (Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah) give out advice, we discussed other implications just now which we are considering, that is why we have not decided yet.

 

“For instance, there are single mothers with young children, if they are not allowed to bring their children to the shopping centres, and if they bring them, they will be compounded, so where are they going to leave their children.

 

“If they bring along (the children), they will be issued compounds, if they lock them in the house, anything can happen to the children, if they leave them in the car, the children may die. There are many considerations we have to look at, various issues, that is why we ask the KKM and MKN to sit down and discuss in greater detail, we worry that new issues may arise from our action,” he said.

 

On the SOP for houses of worship submitted by the National Unity Ministry today, he said the government has not made a decision as there were certain things which need to be ironed out.

 

“National Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique will meet again with the leaders of other religions besides Islam to give feedback from the meeting this morning,” he said.

 

Commenting further, Ismail Sabri said the self-discipline of every member of the community was important in ensuring that the chain of COVID-19 infection is broken.

 

He said the World Health Organisation estimates that the COVID-19 virus will be in the community for up to five years or until the vaccine is discovered, so it is impossible for the government to continue with the MCO for that period.

 

“When the MCO is lifted, the SOP and regulations can no longer be imposed on the people, it is self-discipline which will protect us. We have to be aware of what actions we take which are dangerous or not.

 

“For instance, if you bring a small child to the shopping complex, it could court danger, there is no need to bring our children to the shopping complex,” he said.

 

Ismail Sabri also denied reports that travelling across districts was not allowed as was spread on the social media yesterday.

 

Source: BERNAMA News Agency