KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 — Despite interstate and inter-district travel being banned during the movement control order (MCO), the government has decided to allow some leniency to those with plane and bus tickets scheduled for later this week, Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said today.

Ismail Sabri however warned that those looking to carry on with their journey must first obtain permission from the police before travelling.

“After discussing with the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), we decided that for specific cases we will give some leniency, but this leniency will only be given for certain specific cases with proper reasons.

“Like, I was made to understand, some were visiting a sick relative in hospital in their hometown and they are scheduled to return home in two days’ time, say Thursday.


“I spoke to the police for such cases like these, they will be allowed to travel. So for those who have purchased plane or bus tickets, we won’t ask them to cancel and allow them to go forward with their flight,” he said during this non-health Covid-19 press conference today.

The defence minister then suggested that this special leeway would only extend until this Friday.

“I hope those looking to return will do so immediately or latest by this Friday so that they hopefully won’t face a roadblock that prevents them from returning and leaving them stuck in their hometown,” he added.


This comes as the MCO was announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin in six states starting at midnight tonight, that will last until 26 January barring further extensions.

Additionally, Ismail Sabri said long-distance couples will not be allowed to travel during the MCO to be reunited with their partners and families, which was allowed under the first implementation of the MCO last year.

“For now, we will restrict all movement and we ask for these long-distance couples to remain patient.

“If the situation improves, maybe we can consider it then, but as of now, long-distance couples will not be allowed to travel,” he said.