KUALA LUMPUR, March 9 — Nightclubs are still not permissible to reopen when Malaysia transitions into the endemic stage beginning April 1, 2022, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said today.

He said nightclubs are not the same as mamak restaurants and that it’s too dangerous to allow such businesses to reopen for now.

“From April 1, 2022 onwards only one premises or type of premises is still on the negative list that cannot reopen and that’s nightclubs because of the particular nature of nightclubs.

“We’ve looked into this and based on the balance of risk assessment, nightclubs are high-risk premises even during the endemic phase and as such cannot be allowed to reopen,” he said during a press conference from Parliament today.

Malaysia is planning to transition into the endemic stage from April 1 this year and most businesses may return to normalcy.

Mamak eateries and restaurants can now operate according to the times stipulated in their licenses, meaning they can start their 24 hours business again. 

Malaysia plans to transition into the endemic stage this year and borders will reopen starting April 1.

This is despite the high number of cases and deaths reported recently. When asked if it was safe to do so, Khairy alluded to the death rate, adding that many of the fatalities were from those who didn’t get their booster shots.

“We found only 12 per cent got boosted. So it’s very important to get boosted,” said Khairy.

“The fatality rate for those aged above 80 is seven per cent, very high for those that age. Also, 91 per cent of the fatalities had comorbidities with 61 per cent of it being hypertension.

“We know the characteristics of the deaths and will take steps to increase public awareness and also continue to encourage them to take their vaccines and booster shots,” he added.