PUTRAJAYA JAN.29: The Cabinet Ministers had allowed the Umrah travel activities to resume on 8th Feb. after the government decided to temporarily suspend it on 8th Jan. 2022 after evaluating the COVID-19 variant Omicron among the “jemaah” who came back from abroad.
Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) said, besides the evaluation data carried out by the Ministry of Health (MOH) the temporary suspension was aimed at giving space to the government agencies and those involved to evaluate and improve the SOP of Umrah.
“Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri has been engaged in eight sessions since December 2021 aimed at involving the companies handling Umrah such as the Association of Bumiputera Tourism Operating Companies Malaysia (Bumitra), Umrah Tourism Agency & Haji Association (PAPUH) and the Malaysian Association of Tour & Travel Agents (MATTA),” said MOTAC in a statement here today.
The statement added the SOPs of the Umrah travel have been studied by MOTAC, MOH and National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA) and will be forwarded to the Quartet Meeting for approval.
According to the statement, the SOP is a guideline to contain the COVID-19 infections while “jemaah” performs the Umrah activities.
Among the focus includes i) to ensure the “jemaah” are fully vaccinated and booster dose is compulsory for their safety and well-being ii) every jemaah is to be protected by health insurance including treatment, isolation and quarantine for the COVID-19 infection while in Saudi Arabia and when returning to Malaysia ii) the company handling the Umrah is responsible to inform the jemaah on the responsibility, procedure, liability and instructions throughout the Umrah travel.
The statement added, the process to finalise the new SOP takes into consideration the interest of all parties in a holistic manner including balancing the Umrah activities with the strict implementation of the health protocol and safety to safeguard the welfare of the Malaysian Family while they are in the holy places and when the jemaah return to Malaysia.
The statement also stressed that Minister Nancy Shukri hopes the decision will be welcomed by the Umrah travel companies and Malaysian Family and also remind all parties to adhere to the latest SOP that will be announced soon to curb the transmissions of COVID-19. –Malaysia World News.