Cops to fine those trying to ‘balik kampung’, says Ismail Sabri

Police checking on motorists about to enter the PLUS highway from Jalan Duta, Kuala Lumpur. Senior Minister (Security) Ismail Sabri Yaakob says ‘balik kampung’ for Aidilfitri is not allowed.

PUTRAJAYA: Senior Minister (Security) Ismail Sabri Yaakob said more people have been attempting to travel interstate recently, with 508 vehicles stopped by police at roadblocks yesterday.

These motorists, many intending to return to their villages or hometowns (balik kampung) for Aidilfitri, were directed to turn back, he said.

At a press conference today, Ismail said Putrajaya had decided to allow police to issue compound fines from today for this offence, adding that people were only issued warnings before this.

He said police set up 146 interstate roadblocks across the country and checked 238,500 vehicles yesterday.

“Even though we had told people not to return to their hometowns (for Aidilfitri), there are still people trying to travel interstate.

“I hope they will stay home. That money for paying the fine can be spent on other things. Please comply with our instructions.”

Yesterday, Ismail had said only those with letters of approval from the police may travel interstate.

Ismail Sabri Yaakob

Ismail said police arrested 72 people yesterday for breaching the conditional movement control order (CMCO), with 60 of them placed under remand and 12 granted bail. Yesterday’s arrest figures were more than the previous day, which saw 44 people being detained.

Ismail also announced that public transport fees will not be increased as fuel prices were very low at present.

Travel agencies

He said tourism agencies were allowed to operate now but only for administrative purposes.

These travel agencies are also allowed to prepare vacation packages to be offered once Putrajaya allows tourism activities to resume.

Ismail said expatriates and family members under the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme wanting to return to Malaysia will be required to undergo medical screening and test negative for Covid-19 before being allowed to fly back here.

He said this is in addition to the 14-day mandatory quarantine they will have to undergo upon reaching Malaysia, adding that the isolation costs will be borne by them.

Ismail also said there were reports of breach of standard operating procedures (SOPs) at mosques yesterday, particularly involving members of the media who failed to observe social distancing.

He said organisers of any events or programmes will need to ensure enough space for the press or limit the number of media persons invited to ensure SOPs are followed.

He said police and Rela officers will be mobilised to monitor mosques and to act against anyone breaching the rules.

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