KUALA LUMPUR, May 15 — The Pudu area here is not under an enhanced movement control order (EMCO) despite the razor wire fences erected around it, according to Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

Instead, he said the area was under “administrative” restriction during which residents were still permitted to leave their homes.

“It’s not true, Pudu is not under EMCO or a total lockdown as we are only having an administrative control in the area.

“People are still allowed to buy food and other items. For residents of the area, we will conduct screenings on every individual,” said Ismail Sabri in his daily security press conference today.

Earlier today, Kuala Lumpur police chief Datuk Seri Mazlan Lazim confirmed the area was cordoned off but was not placed under an EMCO, and instead described it as an exercise to “empower” the conditional MCO that is still in effect.

Ismail Sabri, who is also the defence minister, explained that the administrative restriction differed from an EMCO as the latter meant a complete lockdown of an area.

Residents in EMCO zones are completely prohibited from leaving their homes and are provided basic necessities by the authorities, he explained.

For Pudu, Ismail Sabri said authorities are testing residents to find possible Covid-19 infections.

“The positive individuals we will identify and treat them on hospitals,” he said.

Earlier today, it was reported that the Pudu area was cordoned off in the early morning as authorities upped Covid-19 screening efforts in the area.

Armed Forces personnel was seen setting up razor-wire fencing as early as 3am at surrounding areas across Hotel Pudu Plaza, similar to recent efforts at the nearby Jalan Raja Bot wet market in Chow Kit.

Today, Ismail Sabri also announced that the EMCO in Selayang Baru, Gombak has ended today as the Ministry of Health (MOH) has conducted all the necessary screenings in the area.

Selayang Baru was the seventh area in the country to come under the EMCO following a spike of cases detected in the nearby Kuala Lumpur wholesale market.