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Gov’t To Cut SOPs Down To 10, Making It Easier For Public To Understand, Says Defence Minister

Gov’t To Cut SOPs Down To 10, Making It Easier For Public To Understand, Says Defence Minister

He also said that the PM will announce more relaxations soon.

Hakim Hassan

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The government wants to streamline SOPs from 180 to just 10, according Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

He said that his Ministry along with three other Ministers are streamlining the existing SOPs so that they are better understood by the people, the industry and those who carry out enforcement.

Currently, there are 181 SOPs covering all four phases of PPN. Through efforts to streamline the SOP, the goal is to reduce it to only 10 SOPs.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

He said that this will take some time but the Government is committed to resolve them before the transition to the endemic phase.

To determine how the existing SOPs can be streamlined, the Government not only takes into account scientific data, especially from the MOH, but also feedback and views from experts and the industry. Developments on it will be informed from time to time.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

Hishamuddin mentioned that he met with three other Ministers – Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul, Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa with the consent of the Prime Minister and the Pandemic Management Special Committee Meeting on 2 September.

He said that discussions focused on four main agendas including:

  • Look at the decisions regarding the relaxations that have been announced before and how the existing SOPs can be further refined to make them easier to understand.
  • Examine the concessions that have been agreed in principle at the Pandemic Management Special Committee Meeting level and detail the appropriate SOPs before announcing them to the public.
  • Seeing the potential of opening more sectors in the future including further expanding flexibility in the tourism sector.
  • Detailing the narrative ahead of the transition to the endemic phase beginning in late October.

PM to announce more relaxations soon

Hishammuddin mentioned that the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob will announce some additional flexibility for the social and economic sectors in the near future.

He said that the Pandemic Management Special Committee Meeting has agreed to allow a number of new concessions that are assessed to be at low risk.

In setting these concessions, the Government truly understands the pressure, fatigue and lethargy of the people after more than a year of being in a pandemic situation that limits activities and movement. This situation should not be allowed to linger as it risks leading to more serious effects especially affecting mental health.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

He was quoted by Berita Harian previously saying that certain sectors have already in principle obtained approvals on the condition that these four Ministers detail it before announcing it to the public.

We also look at certain sectors such as the ‘travel and tourism bubble’, where we all know that Langkawi has opened as a pilot project and it can be expanded if it runs smoothly, safely and meets the set SOPs. If there is another sector that needs to be considered, it can be expanded to other sectors.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

The fourth agenda, he said, is to see the pandemic in an endemic context October, how Malaysians can find a way to live with Covid-19.

Government also considering to open up more industries

In addition to the concessions to be announced, the Government is also examining and considering several other forms of additional concessions including:

  • Tourism activities other than destinations included in the tourism bubble initiative.
  • Adding destinations under the tourism bubble initiative for non-island destinations.
  • Opening of gyms

However, before the concessions are announced, the Government through the Ministry of Health Malaysia (MOH) will first assess the level of risk of Covid-19 infection by applying the 3C/3S principle.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

If it meets the conditions and criteria set, Hishamuddin said, the Government is ready to allow its implementation.

Details on this will be discussed in the next Ministerial Meeting.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

SOP streamline based on 3C/3S Principle

Taking into account the spread of new violent variants including the Delta variant, the setting of the SOP hereafter will be made with the aim of ensuring that it is able to avoid, as much as possible, the 3C (or 3S) while reducing the risk of Covid-19 infection.

They are:

  • Crowded Places – Short-term physical distancing is safer.
  • Confined Spaces (Narrow) – Open spaces outside are safer
  • Close Conversation – Long distance physical distancing, wearing a face mask, short interactions are safer.

Through the SOP setting method that adopts the 3C/3S principle, the Government is ready to consider more flexibility to enable the people to carry out social and economic activities that are assessed to be at low risk.

Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein

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