Summary

Malaysia is enacting strict movement curbs termed the conditional movement control order (CMCO) across Labuan as of Oct. 21 due to high local coronavirus disease (COVID-19) activity. The rules are in place through at least Oct. 30. Travel to and from Labuan is banned, with an exemption for emergency situations, among others. Starting Oct. 22, employees must telecommute, except for those whose work requires them to be on-site. Workers with management roles may also work at offices with restrictions; safeguards include allowing only 10 percent of the affected employees to be on-site at any one time and allowing these staff members to work on-site only 1000-1400 for a maximum of three days weekly. Medical facilities can open for 24 hours daily. Food establishments can serve dining-in customers 0600-2200 daily with rules, such as limiting only two patrons for each table and ensuring physical distancing. Markets may open with varying hours, such as 0600-1200 for agricultural markets. Educational institutions, entertainment venues, wedding receptions, exhibitions, and cultural and sporting activities are suspended. Public transport can continue operating with protocols in place. Taxis and ride-hailing service vehicles can operate only 0600-2200 daily with a maximum of two passengers. Water taxi and ferry services can run only 0600-1800 daily, with controls such as enforcing contact tracing measures. Only two persons from each household may leave their homes at a time to obtain essential supplies.

Authorities have deployed additional security personnel and erected checkpoints across Labuan to enforce the controls. Severe business and transport disruptions are likely in the area during the movement restrictions. Officials may expand or extend the measures if local COVID-19 activity remains high.

Advice

Strictly heed the instructions of authorities. Avoid all nonessential operations in the affected area. Confirm appointments. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by law enforcement officers.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

 

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