36 from Sulawesi tabligh event return via Johor

Johor police chief Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay says 30 more from the Malaysian tabligh congregation are expected to return via Johor ferry terminals. (Bernama pic)

ISKANDAR PUTERI: A total of 36 Malaysians who attended the Ijtima of Asia 2020 tabligh gathering in Sulawesi, Indonesia, recently have returned home in stages since March 23 via two international ferry terminals in Johor.

Johor police chief Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said the 36 re-entered the country via international ferry terminals in Stulang and the one in Puteri Harbour here.

He said they came in through Johor on March 23 and 24, and today.

Upon their return, they were handed over to health ministry (MOH) officials to undergo quarantine in their respective states.

“We expect another 30 more from the Malaysian congregation to return (via Johor ferry terminals). We will make sure they go through MOH screenings and are quarantined for 14 days.

“They have only two choices to return home, either through Stulang or Puteri Harbour.

“There is no other way (through Johor),” he told reporters after a visit to the Puteri Harbour International Ferry Terminal where eight members of the tabligh congregation disembarked today.

Prior to this, the MOH reported that between 80 and 100 Malaysians had gone to Sulawesi to attend the gathering, scheduled to take place from March 19-22.

However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the organisers cancelled the event.

Meanwhile, Ayob Khan said only 12 more individuals from Johor, who attended the tabligh gathering in Sri Petaling in Kuala Lumpur at the end of last month, have yet to undergo health screening.

He said a total of 1,716 individuals from Johor attended the Sri Petaling mosque gathering, and from those, 1,704 have already been screened.

Ayob Khan, who also visited the Pandan wholesale market here as part of his observation of the ongoing movement control order (MCO), said police will not compromise with those who defy MCO directives.

“No more warnings. After this, we will ensure that those who defy the order will be arrested. If we find more than two people in a vehicle, we will tell them to turn back,” he said.

So far, Johor police have opened 32 investigation papers for MCO violations, with three offenders charged in court yesterday, he said.