MCO extended from 5th February till 18th February

Malaysians will have to spend yet another festival in lockdown again – Chinese New Year this time – as news of MCO 2.0 being extended for another 2 more weeks till 18th February 2021 has just been broken.

With the dreadfully high number of cases that still hasn’t gone down since MCO 2.0 kicked in more than 3 weeks ago, we’re sure that many Malaysians out there are saddened by the news, but not entirely taken by surprise.

Daily positive cases are still on an upward trend

Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob giving an address
Image credit: Ismail Sabri Yaakob

Senior Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob has officially announced that the MCO will be extended from 5th February to 18th February for all states and federal territories, except Sarawak. Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri delivered the message via a live broadcast aired an hour ago, citing that the Health Ministry has confirmed that daily positive cases showed no signs of decreasing.

The senior minister also added that the spread of the virus is within the community now as both Malaysians and non-Malaysians alike have been succumbing to the infection.

Even though Health Director-General Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah had stated that MCO 2.0 would not last beyond four weeks to avoid the consequence of a severe economic impact before this, the latest extension decision was made in agreement with the National Security Council following the Health Ministry’s advice during a special meeting today.

New figures hitting record highs almost daily

From 29th to 31st January, Malaysia reported more than 5,000 new positive cases a day for these three consecutive days, sparking alarm among the public.

Though Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Amirudin Shari has come out to clarify that the sudden spike in new infections were due to a testing backlog from factories, prisons, and private clinics and hospitals failing to report their screening results in real time, yesterday’s update totalling 4,214 new cases is evident that we’re nowhere near ready to come out of the MCO just yet.

Malaysia daily new cases stats
Image credit: @kementeriankesihatanmalaysia

Selangor still reports the highest number of daily new cases in the whole of Malaysia, with 1,362 positive cases recorded yesterday. Meanwhile, Johor came in second at 1,068 new cases, followed by Kuala Lumpur at 702 new cases.

MCO extended nationwide except Sarawak

It may seem like we’re in a never-ending cycle of MCO being extended time and time again, but hopefully, MCO 2.0 will truly be the last bout of lockdown we have to endure. After all, our government has confirmed that the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine supplies will arrive by late February and 70% of the population are expected to receive it.

So hang in there a little while longer, Malaysians, and don’t forget to check in on each other!

Stay alert with more COVID-19 updates here:

Cover image adapted from: Ismail Sabri Yaakob, @kementeriankesihatanmalaysia, Cyberjaya Community, Kementerian Kesihatan Malaysia

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