GEORGE TOWN, Oct 14 — Penang North-east district police chief Asst Comm Soffian Santong has warned the public to stop spreading fake news on Covid-19 cases, the latest being a voice recording claiming that 18 policemen from the Penang police headquarters had tested positive for the virus.
He said there has been a lot of misinformation on the enhanced movement control order (EMCO) for the Penang Remand Prison and prison quarters in the north-east district and now, another fake news has surfaced.
“The message in Hokkien warned people to be careful as it claimed that 18 policemen in IPK had tested positive for Covid-19.
“I want to stress that this information is not true, no police officer in Penang had tested positive for Covid-19, so the public must stop spreading this fake news,” he said during a press conference today.
He advised the public to refer only to official statements from the National Security Council or the police for matters pertaining to Covid-19.
“We will trace the person who spread this fake news that caused unnecessary panic,” he said.
Soffian said there was also misinformation that the EMCO was for the whole Northeast district of the island which was not true.
\He reassured the public that the EMCO was only for the remand prison and the prison quarters and it involved specifically the remand prison inmates and the prison staff living in the quarters.
“The EMCO, involving 2,298 remand prison inmates and 390 staff in the prison quarters, will be effective from midnight of October 15 until 11.59pm of October 27,” he said.
He said the police will set up roadblocks around the prison area and only a few roads around the prison will be closed.
Jalan Penjara where the main entrance of the prison is located will be closed to traffic, part of the Barrack Road will also be closed and Jalan Lim Khoon Huat will only be open to residents of the health department quarters there.
“This will not affect the public living near the area as they can go about their normal activities, the EMCO only applies to the prison inmates and the prison quarters staff,” he said.
Soffian said a total 153 officers from the police, Rela, armed forces and civil defence department will be involved in enforcing the EMCO.
Entrance number 6 to the Penang Hospital, which was facing the remand prison, will also be closed so the public is advised to use other entrances to the hospital.
EMCO was implemented at the remand prison and prison quarters after 141 prison inmates tested positive for Covid-19.