KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 – Civil servants who will be receiving their salaries today must remain mindful of the directives imposed under the two-week Movement Control Order (MCO) and limit outdoor presence.
The MCO enters its eighth day today, and common practice on payday suggests that many Malaysians would be making a beeline to the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), and to supermarkets and public markets for essentials.
As such, the public is advised to take heed of Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s advice yesterday not to crowd banks and ATMs to ensure social distancing is upheld in the effort to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
Civil servants may not be the only ones to have their salaries credited today as a number of private companies are also expected to pay their employees much earlier than usual.
The Women and Family Ministry have also announced that 500,000 recipients of its monthly welfare aid will be receiving their payments today.
Members of the public, as such, are advised not to resort to panic buying, and to remain prudent in their spending as the government has given the assurance that there is enough supply of essential goods and items.
In Melaka, the state government has urged those with shopping plans to come out early to prevent crowding as many supermarkets there have imposed staggered entry for customers.
In this regard, the public must play their part in practicing social distancing while at supermarkets and public markets, and also by using face masks and hand sanitizers.
Since the MCO came into force on March 18, the level of public compliance has gradually risen to 95 percent, and it is now hoped that rate will continue to improve to achieve its main aim of breaking the chain of COVID-19 transmission, which have claimed the lives of 16 people as of last night.
Besides this, the government has also reminded those back in their hometowns to remain there for the time being.
This is to ensure the level of compliance remains high with urban areas virtually turning into ‘ghost towns’ as a result of strict enforcement by the authorities.
Ismail Sabri had also said that to maintain this, the police have mounted roadblocks at 23 toll plazas nationwide.
Those who defy directives will face legal action, he said.