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Only 400 Malaysians allowed to return from Singapore a day

This article is more than 12 months old

New rules requiring Malaysians returning from Singapore to first apply for an entry permit were implemented yesterday to better manage the flow of workers across the border, a top Johor official has said.

The Malaysian High Commission in Singapore will issue only 400 permits daily for the land crossing, to ensure a smoother transition to quarantine facilities, Johor Health and Environment Committee chairman R. Vidyananthan told The Straits Times.

Under Malaysia's movement control order (MCO) in force since March 18, Malaysians returning from overseas will need to be quarantined in government facilities for 14 days.

According to Mr Vidyananthan, the number of citizens returning from Singapore has averaged about 400 a day since the MCO.


But that number spiked to between 800 and 1,000 when major announcements were made on further restrictions in both countries to combat the coronavirus outbreak.

"During those times, the waiting time for health screening and hotel allocation (for quarantine) can take up a lot of time, and sometimes it is only completed in the early hours," Mr Vidyananthan said.

"So we suggested that we take the average number, which is more manageable, and this will provide a more pleasant experience for the returning travellers."

Malaysian Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said on Sunday that applicants for the permit would have to e-mail at least two days before travelling.

Once they get approval, travellers are required to present a copy or a screenshot of the permit to Malaysian immigration in Johor Baru.

Mr Vidyananthan said the permit was solely for travellers using the Causeway and Second Link. - THE STRAITS TIMES