KUALA LUMPUR, April 20 — Deputy Health Minister I Datuk Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali today apologised for allegedly violating the movement control order (MCO), where mass gatherings are banned.
He also said that he had given his statement to the police for the investigation over his presence at a lunch event at a tahfiz school in Perak, that was said to not comply with social distancing requirements.
“I apologise and admit to erring in relation to my presence at the Maahad Tahfiz Quran Lid Dakwah Wal Imamah at Lenggong, Perak on Friday, April 17, 2020, after an official visit to the Lenggong Health Clinic,” the Bagan Serai MP from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) said in a statement.
“I have given my statement at the Putrajaya district police headquarters (IPD Putrajaya) this afternoon and am prepared to give full co-operation to the PDRM in its investigation.
“I really appreciate the police’s commitment in carrying out their responsibilities in their efforts to enforce the law without regard for an individual’s background, position and so on,” he added.
In the same statement, Dr Noor Azmi also expressed appreciation for the “huge sacrifice” by frontliners such as the police, the Malaysian Armed Forces, Health Ministry staff and those from other government agencies in their efforts to fight Covid-19.
He also said he prayed that all Malaysians would continue to be patient and remain calm in facing all challenges during the MCO period.
Malaysia is currently in the middle of a six-week MCO to help slow the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak.
Earlier today, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador was reported saying that investigations on this matter were ongoing, with the investigation paper — which will be submitted to the public prosecutor for further action — expected to be completed today.
Dr Noor Azmi had reportedly uploaded several photographs on Facebook last week of his visit to the religious school in Perak, with the matter going viral with online users reportedly claiming that he had breached the MCO.
Yesterday, Perak executive council member Razman Zakaria also apologised about the same lunch event at which he was present with the deputy health minister.
Earlier today, Razman’s son Muhammad Rifaat Razman clarified that both he and his father were not fined or arrested by the police over the lunch gathering, explaining that they went home after police recorded their statements.
Razman said that the case is still under investigation and they will await the authorities’ decision.