Works Ministry: All construction work must stop unless critical

A general view of the Pavilion Damansara Heights construction site March 18, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May
A general view of the Pavilion Damansara Heights construction site March 18, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, March 18 — The Works Ministry today announced that all construction work must be halted during the movement control order, save for some categorised as critical.

The ministry also listed the type of work deemed as urgent.

“Is the construction sector subject to the movement control order as announced by the prime minister? Yes. This means that all construction and maintenance work must stop.

“Is there an exception to any construction industry and maintenance services from the order? There is, for critical work.

“What does critical work mean? Critical work is work that, if left unattended, can cause harm to employees, the public or the environment,” it said, listing slope repairs, pothole repairs, traffic management control (TMC), repair of elevators/travelators/escalators and other critical mechanical and electrical equipment, maintenance work at critical service premises, facility upgrading works at critical service premises, traffic light repair, the construction of Bailey Bridge at locations with collapsed bridges, emergency services as stipulated under contract and other work which, if left uncompleted, may cause harm.

The ministry said that the exceptions must come from the project superintendent and/or project director for government projects, resident engineer and/or principal submitting person for a private project.

It added that no compensation claims can be made from the government, as the order was made pertaining to a virus outbreak which is beyond government control.

On Monday night, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin announced a government order effective today that would require Malaysians to stop all public gatherings and shut down any non-essential businesses and stores, with only places selling daily necessities and essential services such as transportation, food supply, health, pharmacies, banking and utilities allowed to continue operations.

This includes all schools, private institutions and other learning institutions.

The National Security Council (NSC) also said all Malaysians, including students who are currently studying and working abroad, are allowed to return to the country during the period but will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

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