Don’t relax SOP just because infection tally dives, Najib cautions

ANY decision to relax movement control order (MCO) restrictions should not be based on new infections number alone, said former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“Just because our daily infection tally drops to below 4,000 daily, it doesn’t mean we’re out of the woods. The easiest way to show reduced numbers is by decreasing testing capacity.

“But what is important is for us to divide the number of new infections with how may testing we do daily,” he said, in a Facebook post.

Yesterday, Senior Minister (Security) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the Government is studying the possibility of relaxing MCO restrictions should daily COVID-19 infections drop to below 4,000.

Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s post.

The Bera MP, however, stressed the decision will be made upon consulting Health Ministry (MOH).

“This doesn’t mean MCO is going to be over but we’re looking at relaxing COVID-19 standard operating procedure (SOP) if cases go down,” he was reported saying.

Be strict on lockdown, please

Arguing against the idea, Najib said that Malaysia’s average COVID-19 test positivity rate was at 6.89%, which is above the 5% threshold set by the World Health Organization (WHO).

He also included test positivity data as follows;

  • June 14: 70,044 screening, 4,949 cases (7.1%)
  • June 13: 80,130 screening, 5,304 cases (6.6%)
  • June 12: 90,238 screening, 5,793 cases (6.4%)
  • June 11: 99,974 screening, 6,849 cases (6.9%)

Najib reminded the Government that the reason a lockdown is imposed was to save lives, adding he was against relaxing SOP until intensive care unit (ICU) usage in hospitals drops below 70%.

“ICU usage has exceeded 100% since last month, increasing death tally. Even now, there are 921 people warded under ICU, which is unfortunately record breaking.

“So, it’s either we reduce the number of those warded under ICU to below 70% or increase ICU capacity, or both,” he opined.

Najib then urged the Government again to be strict on the total lockdown, by revoking all exemptions given to the non-essential sectors, especially the manufacturing side.

“Let’s not allow jogging as well for the next two weeks. Don’t repeat past mistakes by relaxing rules too early which led to our current predicament,” the Pekan MP remarked. – June 15, 2021.


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