Kit Siang argues for exit strategy once MCO expires

Jerry Choong
A police personnel conducts checks on a food delivery rider during a road block in Kuala Lumpur April 7, 2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, April 8 — DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has urged for the formulation of an exit strategy for the partial lockdown caused by the ongoing movement control order (MCO) which is set to expire next Tuesday (April 14).

He said such a strategy should be considered and discussed by all quarters, since the Covid- 19 pandemic is not just a health crisis, but also an economic one.

“This is also why an emergency meeting of Parliament, even a ‘virtual’ one, is so urgent, imperative, and should deserve first order of priority. What is the proper exit strategy?” Lim said in a statement.

The Iskandar Puteri MP added that should such a strategy be developed, it must ensure the Covid-19 virus, though not truly under control until the development of a vaccine, is sufficiently contained to allow the economic engine to restart and for lives to return to as much normalcy as possible.

“The division of the country by the National Security Council and the Health Ministry into four coloured zones for Covid-19 infections can be used as a basis for an exit strategy for controlled easing of restriction of movement.

“However the zones should be updated daily so as not to overstate the seriousness of Covid-19 infection in various parts of the country,” he said.

Lim noted that a red zone refers to an area with over 40 Covid-19 positive cases, an orange zone to one with 21 to 40 positive cases, a yellow zone to an area with one to 20 positive cases, while a green zone has no recorded cases.

“If recent Covid-19 developments are taken into account for instance, the recoveries from the Covid-19 infection and hospital discharges, all the five districts in Penang would be in the yellow zone — in fact, the Seberang Perai Selatan district will be close to become a green zone with only one case of infection.

“The latest data on Covid-19 in Malaysia gives encouragement to my cautious optimism that we have passed the peak of the second wave of the Covid-19 outbreak, although we must be prepared for a resurgence of the  virus until a vaccine in 12 to 18 months’ time or more,” he said.

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