Latest CNY gathering SOPs

This year’s Chinese New Year will be very different from the past festive seasons in Malaysia. With MCO extended till 18th February and the initial restrictions on interstate and inter-district travelling still in place, there will definitely be no balik kampung, open houses, or visiting relatives and friends. However, the latest CNY gathering SOPs saw slight relaxation in some of the policies.

Reunion dinners allowed but for less than 15 family members only

yee sang
Image credit: @aloftkls

It was previously conveyed that reunion dinners were not allowed unless you lived in the same household. But the National Unity Ministry released a statement yesterday announcing that the customary reunion dinners on Chinese New Year Eve will now be allowed, as Chinese Malaysians raised their discontentment since some have family members and relatives living close by, and Chinese New Year is one of the most important events for them, after all.

Although there is a change in policy, SOPs will still be in place to prevent a super spreader event or gathering that might spike another wave of infections. These SOPs state that only 15 family members are permitted to gather for CNY reunion dinners, provided that the members of different households are situated within a 10km radius and travelling to each other’s houses. These family members will not be allowed to cross state or district borders.

Daily new cases decreasing slightly, but still close to 4,000

malaysia daily covid cases numbers
Image credit: @kementeriankesihatanmalaysia

The latest COVID-19 figures reported yesterday on 7th February saw 3,731 new positive cases. While the numbers have decreased compared to that period in January when we hit a record-high of more than 5,000 new cases for three consecutive days, having a daily number of cases in the high 3,000s is still a cause for concern, especially since we have been placed under the MCO for almost a month now.

Our total confirmed cases currently stand at 242,452, with 51,241 of those being active cases. We reported 15 deaths yesterday, bringing the total death toll to 872. On the bright side, 190,339 people have made a full recovery, which means that our recovery rate is at 78.5%.

Chinese New Year in the midst of MCO

Though Chinese New Year this year will be a much quieter affair, it doesn’t mean that its meaning is lost. We can still upkeep the tradition of reunion dinners by ordering deliveries from restaurants that have traditional CNY dishes such as yee sang and poon choi.

We can also spring-cleaning our house, decking it out in tanglungs and other red decor, stocking up on CNY cookies, dressing nicely on the first day, greeting our elders with auspicious wishes to receive our angpaus, and the like. As for those relatives and friends who live further away, the wonders of technology can reconnect everybody in an instant.

Check in with more COVID-19 updates here:

Cover image adapted from: @aloftkls and @kementeriankesihatanmalaysia

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