Malaysia’s king orders mosques to hold prayer, govt funded for 12 add thermal scanners

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad (centre) at one of the thermal screening point located at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang January 27, 2020. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 28, 2020, Malay Mail. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri´ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah today ordered all mosques to hold the “solat hajat” (prayer of need) and “doa selamat,” Malay Mail reported.

Comptroller of the Royal Household for Istana Negara Datuk Ahmad Fadil Shamsuddin said the move is aimed to seek help from Allah SWT to protect the country and the people from any unforeseen diseases following the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak in China and a few other countries, including Malaysia.

“His Majesty is following development on the outbreak of the disease and is deeply concerned about the safety of Malaysians, both in Malaysia and abroad.

“His Majesty calls on the people to pray for Malaysia and the world to be protected from the outbreak of the disease and to facilitate local authorities and those in the affected areas to deal with the situation,” he said in a statement issued by Istana Negara today.

Al-Sultan Abdullah reiterated his advice for the people to keep abreast with the development on the coronavirus outbreak only through official channels of the Ministry of Health (MoH) and government agencies, as well as the mainstream media.

His Majesty also advised the people to always follow the advice and recommendations on preventive measures and health practices issued by MoH.

The Finance Ministry has expedited funding for 12 additional thermal scanners that Health Minister Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad said were needed to help monitor for a possible outbreak of the 2019-nCoV.

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng agreed with Dzulkefly’s assessment that the devices were essential to detect arriving visitors who may be carrying the novel coronavirus that has already caused over 100 deaths in China.

“Seeing that the request is related to critical efforts to safeguard public health, I have asked the secretary-general of the Treasury Tan Sri Ahmad Badri Mohd Zahir to provide every cooperation for this allocation to be channelled as soon as possible,” Lim said in a statement today.

Lim added that his ministry was giving its full support to the Health Ministry in order to ensure that public health agencies were equipped to perform their duties to international standards.

The Health Ministry is already conducting thermal scanning at all of the country’s major entry points.

This morning, Chinese health officials confirmed that there were now over 4,500 new cases of 2019-nCoV infections with 106 recorded deaths.

Malaysia is among countries that have registered confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, with four reported so far.

Yesterday, the Prime Minister’s Office said the government was suspending all visa facilities for travellers originating from China’s Hubei province that is believed to be the centre of the epidemic there.

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