Umno vice-president Mohd Khaled Nordin has blasted the indefinite extension of the movement control order, saying it will never work as long as “golden children” like factories and the industrial sectors keep operating despite contributing many Covid-19 clusters.
“MCO is announced again and it is to be expected. This is because our daily cases per million population is among the highest in the world and at alarming numbers.
“That’s something we all know and are aware of. And we don’t dispute it.
“What we question is, how long do we have to be locked into this cycle of ‘half-baked’ MCOs,” said Khaled, not pulling his punches.
In a statement today he claimed that the main cause of the spread of Covid-19 cases was not citizens who are disobedient and stubborn as daily clusters from the general public was minimal.
“The data shows the factories and industrial sectors as the main contributors to
increase in cases. But they are the golden children who get a lot of leeway and are allowed to operate as usual.”
Khaled said that what the government was doing was akin to applying medicine to a place that was not even injured while ignoring the open wound.
“If this approach is maintained, until the end of the emergency period (on Aug 1) we can be certain the situation will improve,” he added.
Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said today that the MCO will not end tomorrow, as the first phase of the National Recovery Plan continues until the threshold of less than 4,000 cases a day is reached, ICU capacity has been eased and 10 percent of the population has been vaccinated.
“The government will announce more comprehensive assistance to all groups of society on Monday or Tuesday,” said the Pagoh MP
The Health Ministry yesterday reported 5,803 new Covid-19 cases and there were 81 fatalities, bringing the cumulative death toll to 4,884.
The number of fatalities in June alone thus far is 2,088.
Khaled, like Muhyiddin, is a former Johor menteri besar, but he has shown himself to be a harsh critic of the latter’s time in office.
“I urge the government to immediately implement a number of critical policies, instead of endlessly studying the matter.
“Firstly, increase cash/subsistence assistance to those affected as many are in critical condition.
“Secondly, manage states and zones that have such low cases in a different way. Having a broad nationwide MCO punishes all parties in an unfair manner.
“Thirdly, please check and monitor the factories and sectors that are a major contributor to daily cases. These are the ones who need to be firmly monitored, not by continuing to lock up the whole country,” he said.