Home minister vows stern action against those hiding Covid-19 suspects, infections

Kenneth Tee
Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin speaks during press conference in Kuala Lumpur March 31, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, March 31 — Stern action will be taken against individuals concealing information or people linked to Covid-19, in particular those from the Sri Petaling Mosque tabligh cluster, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin warned today.

Hamzah said from the thousands of Covid-19 screenings conducted from the tabligh cluster, there were still pockets of individuals who refused to get themselves screened with the country set to enter the second phase of the movement control order (MCO) enforced nationwide beginning tomorrow.

“I would like to emphasise here that anyone, for example, knows he is Covid-19 positive and decides to stay home with others who have been screened, chose to hide the fact he is infected and refused to get himself tested, we will take stern action.

“Those who is aware of their family members involvement in the tabligh cluster and choose to conceal said information, we will take stern action,” he told a press conference at Bukit Aman here.

When asked about the types of sterner actions to be taken, Hamzah merely said “it should be understood” and refused to elaborate.

He also added that the media will be informed first if such actions are eventually taken.

“I am just giving a warning today. But from tomorrow onwards, don’t get mad [when we take action],” he added.

Hamzah also warned the public that the authorities will take stern action against those who disseminate or fabricate fake news on Covid-19, after being advised to do so by Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador.

“Covid-19 does not recognise race or religion. From the data that we have, your race or position [in society] doesn’t matter.

“Anyone can be infected and transmit the virus to their families. Therefore, no one should fabricate news that can divide racial unity in the country.

“What we should do instead, is help one another and not point fingers at each other. If there are still such news on social media, we will take stern action,” he said.

Under the enhanced MCO enforced beginning April 1 until April 14, tighter measures will be implemented and operation hours of certain services reduced.

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