Johor ruler urges M'sia govt consider full lockdown as Covid-19 cases explode

He made an oblique reference to Malaysians persisting in meeting this festive season.

Belmont Lay | May 27, 2021, 02:52 AM

Ruler of Johor, Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar, has urged the Malaysian government to consider a full lockdown if Covid-19 cases increase further.

The king of the southern-most Malaysian state put up a statement on Facebook on May 26, 2021, urging all levels of society to commit to a self-lockdown to break the chain of infection.

More than 7,400 new cases in one day

He expressed concern that more than 7,400 new cases were recorded on Wednesday, May 26 alone, describing it as "frightening".

He also urged all facets of society to stay home as the virus was spreading through the mingling of people.

He made an oblique reference to the possibility that this current wave of infections could be linked to the recent Hari Raya Puasa festivities.

His post, in Malay and English, admonished Malaysians to act responsibly: "Let’s swallow the bitter pill now, instead of suffering continuously in limbo.”

Malaysians still engaging in buka puasa events

Despite the Covid-19 situation, some Malaysians still persisted in meeting one another following the fasting month of Ramadan and the authorities already calling on all buka puasa celebrations to be deferred.

The sultan added: “We must not only be disciplined enough to stay home but must realise that by going to public places or even just a neighbour’s home, we could get ourselves infected unknowingly, or we could be carrying the virus and passing it on to others. It is selfish to only think of ourselves! Think of others too!"

"The government should consider a full lockdown as well, if Covid numbers show no sign of abating," he added.

Sympathises with frontliners

Sultan Ibrahim also wrote that he sympathises with all frontliners, especially medical staff, who have to bear the brunt when the virus spreads.

“We can see for ourselves their exhaustion and depression, yet they diligently stick to their duties and tasks. Remember, Covid-19 is not the only disease they have to deal with," he wrote.

“Have pity on them. We must all do our part to reduce the burden on them and break the chain of infection for our greater good.”

Sultan Ibrahim also said he spoke to Health director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah by phone.

He wrote: “The emergence of new variants is also frightening, and the virus is now airborne too. If infections continue to rise, I worry even more variants of Covid-19 will appear."