Food supply and production in Malaysia are sufficient even without the presence of foreign workers, says Senior Minister


PUTRAJAYA NOV.5:  The production and supply of food in Malaysia are under control and sufficient even without the presence of foreign workers who could not return due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Senior and Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said, the officers from the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs are constantly checking on the production and supply of food at the food premises nationwide to ensure there are sufficient supply for the local consumers throughout the enforcement of Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) in the country.

“The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries is also monitoring the agricultural farms and plantations to ensure the food supply is enough for the Malaysians even without the presence and assistance of foreign workers,” said Ismail in his daily press conference held here today.

Ismail was responding to a question posed by the media on the alleged situation that the local food supply is not sufficient due to the shortage of foreign workers that are stranded in their home countries due to COVID-19 and also the borders have been closed to foreign workers.

Yesterday it was reported 25,000 workers from Bangladesh were stranded in their country for not being able to return to Malaysia due to their visas had expired besides they could not enter Malaysia for Bangladesh was among the 23 high risk countries for COVID-19 infections.

However Ismail said, experts in specialised fields and Chief Executive Officer or owner of an investor company are allowed to enter the country with special permission from the government.

Meanwhile on the Deepavali festival that will be celebrated by the Hindus on 14th November 2020, Ismail said, the prayer session will only be allowed on the first day at the places under the RMCO and Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) by adhering to the strict standard operating procedure (SOP).

However he said inter- state/district travels with the intention to return to the home towns are not allowed for those under CMCO and Enhanced MCO (EMCO).

Ismail also mentioned that the SOP for the opening of the worship house only allows 30 people to be present at any one time and depending on the space of the “house” with physical distancing in force.

“The prayer session is allowed to convene from 7am till 12pm with each session running for 30 minutes that will be followed with sanitation intervals for 30 minutes before a new prayer begins and the packed “sweet desserts” should be distributed to the people after the completion of the prayers.

Ismail also said, Deepavali could be celebrated at strata homes with 1500sq.ft.with not more than 10 persons at any one time while for 2,500sq.ft 15 persons at any one time.

On another development, Ismail said, the Enhanced MCO (EMCO) that was imposed on Pokok Sena Prison, Kedah from 11th October till 7th November was lifted and the same goes to six localities in Semporna and one locality in Kunak, Sabah were also lifted on 6th November. However these places are still under the Conditional MCO (CMCO).

Meanwhile the EMCO in Anjung Teduh FELDA Sahabat, Lahad Datu, Sabah is extended from 7th November till 20th November 2020 following 56 new COVID-19 cases were detected when the screening test was done on 2,615 individuals on October 4. Now 28 cases have recovered while 28 are still active.

The government has also imposed EMCO on the temporary Detention Centre, Tawau Sabah and also on Sandakan Prison and Taman Wira Quarters, Sandakan from 6th November.until 19th November.

The Tawau Centre involves 1,700 individuals, with 1,603 detainees and 104 staffs while the Sandakan Prison involves 1,605 individuals with 1,300 detainees and 297 staffs.

According to Ismail, three places in different states are enforced with CMCO effective from 7th November. until 20th November 2020. The places include Mukim Parit Buntar, Perak with 45,359 households and 7,847 houses while Mukim Rasau, Dungun Terengganu involves 43,687 people and Mukim Jimah, Port Dickson, Negeri Sembilan involves 24,540 people .

According to Dr. Noor Hisham, 11 people were detected with positive COVID-19 in the screening test conducted by the Ministry of Health on 3rd November 2020 in Mukim Jimah, Port Dickson. –Malaysia World News

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