Now, Putrajaya says Covid-19 swab tests only mandatory for foreign staff in red zones

Emmanuel Santa Maria Chin
·1-min read
Healthcare workers carry out Covid-19 screening in Kuala Lumpur October 21, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Healthcare workers carry out Covid-19 screening in Kuala Lumpur October 21, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 — The recently announced rule making Covid-19 testing mandatory for working and living in red zones under the condition movement control order (CMCO) only applies to foreign workers, Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob has now explained.

The Senior Minister (Security Cluster), when clarifying the recent regulation, said that besides foreign staff, anyone displaying symptoms are also compelled to undergo the Covid-19 swab test.

“The swab test is mandatory for foreign workers, such as those in the construction sector or working as security guards, and those with symptoms. They must be tested,” he said.

Despite not enforcing a blanket rule to require even Malaysians to get tested before reporting for work, Ismail said the government strongly advised those within red zones to get tested to avoid putting their family and others in danger.

“Even though we are not making it mandatory for everyone to be swab tested, we strongly advise everyone to do a swab test just to be safe.

“This is just to make sure of your personal status and so that we are not posing a danger to our family and those around us,” Ismail said.

Yesterday, Ismail announced a work from home (WFH) order for those in the public and industrial sectors, adding that mandatory testing would be required for those living in red zones in areas currently under the CMCO.

The announcement then caused widespread confusion among the public, questioning the practicality of such a decision before his clarification today.

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