KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 — Caretaker Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has announced additional social and economic freedoms for states under Phase One of the National Recovery Programme (NRP), including dining at restaurants.
In a Facebook post, Muhyiddin said the decision was made during a special National Security Council (NSC) meeting, and the easing of restrictions would apply only to those who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19.
“For your information, the considerations made today take into account the positive development of the complete vaccination rate of the adult populations across the country, which has exceeded 50 per cent. This was earlier than previously targeted August 31.
“In addition, the meeting also took note of the positive early developments from the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP) in several states namely Labuan, Sarawak, Negri Sembilan and states in the Klang Valley,” he said.
Besides allowing dining in, Muhyiddin announced that non-contact sports such as golfing and fishing would be allowed.
He also disclosed that that night and weekend markets would also be allowed to operate.
The common requirement for all the relaxations was that patrons must display their digital vaccination certificates before being allowed to enter.
“I would like to stress that every ministry and agency that oversees the monitoring of these facilities, including the owners of the premises, must take full responsibility to ensure that they are implemented in accordance with the regulations and guidelines set and avoid any harm,” he said.
On dine-ins, Muhyiddin advised operators of restaurants and eating establishments to provide more dining areas outdoors for better ventilation as the risk of spread is much higher indoors.
He stressed that it was mandatory for business operators to inspect the digital vaccination certificates before letting the patrons into their premises.
“As for couples who have completed their vaccinations and want to bring their children aged 17 and under for dine-ins, please ensure that your children adhere to the strict SOPs set,” he said.
As for non-contact sports, Muhyiddin said that sports such as jogging, exercising, taichi, cycling, skateboarding, fishing, equestrian, archery, hiking, tennis, badminton, golf, motoring and the like would be allowed, but only in the same district the person is from.
“Sports and recreational activities are important to ensure good mental health and physical fitness.
“Therefore, the activities that are allowed must comply with physical distancing OPS and must be done outdoors from 6am to 10pm,” he said.
He added that dine-ins at restaurants or cafes at club houses are also allowed, but changing and shower rooms must remain closed to ensure that people do not gather after sporting activities to avoid the risk of infection.
He said that activities such as picnics and camping are also now allowed, but warned participants under the age of 17 to be vigilant and obey SOPs set in place.
Muhyiddin said that in the event of an outbreak at any of the premises given such leeways, the Health Ministry would be on hand immediately to take appropriate measures, including the reevaluation of the risks, including the possibility of immediate closing of the affected premises and areas.
“We as Malaysians have a shared responsibility in our efforts to overcome the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Indeed, these leeways also place a responsibility on the people who have already received complete vaccinations to make rational and prudent self-risk decisions in the face of the current threat of Covid-19 virus in our community. God willing we will win together,” he said.
Malaysia reported 22,948 new Covid-19 cases today, the highest ever in the country so far.