Students can return home beginning Monday

Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob at a news conference at the Ministry of Defence PIX: AFIQ RAZALI / MalayisaGazette /13 MARCH 2020

KUALA LUMPUR – The Special Ministers Meeting on the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO) had decided to allow students from higher learning institutions (IPTA / IPTS) to return to their homes beginning next Monday.

The Minister of Higher Education (MOHE), Datuk Dr. Noraini Ahmad will be responsible for presenting the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) on the process of sending the students home, including those in Polytechnics and Community Colleges.

According to the Senior Minister (Security Cluster), Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, the travel hours will be limited from 9.00 pm until 9.00 am only to ensure a controlled journey without involving mass migration of the students.

“The movement will be done in stages involving journey to the Green Zones only and they will be screened before boarding their busses. They will also be provided with food and face masks,” he said during a news conference in Putrajaya today.

Yesterday, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced the government’s decision for a some exemption to send students stranded at their campuses home during the MCO.

According to Ismail Sabri, the passengers will be limited to half of the existing capacity of their busses to ensure social distancing is observed.

“For example, if the bus has the capacity for 40 passengers, but, to send these students home, it will be limited to 20 passengers only.

“They will be brought to the District Police Headquarters or the District Offices nearest to their home. Then, the officers-on-duty from the government agencies will send them home.

“For students who have their own transport, they are allowed to drive home with the condition that they do not cross the interstate borders and only one person is allowed in each vehicle,” he said, while adding that the students need to obtain the permission letter from their institution and the police.

For students who wish to return to Sabah or Sarawak, Ismail Sabri said that flights to their states will be provided by the government.

However, students who will be returning to the Green Zones in Sabah and Sarawak will be flown to the nearest airport to their home and they must go through the mandatory 14-day quarantine.

According to him, the process of sending the students home will involve 85 percent of the students under MOHE or about 53,000 students. Meanwhile 15 percent of the students chose to stay in their campuses.

“MOHE will continue to provide food and drinks for those who chose to continue to stay at their campuses and further announcements on the movement of the students will be made by the ministry.

“The process of sending home students under the supervision of other ministries such as the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Rural Development must follow the SOP provided,” he said. -MalaysiaGazette

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