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KUALA TERENGGANU, March 6 -- The decision of a family to hold a tahlil event with quite a large number of attendees without complying with the standard operating procedures (SOP) were among the causes of the increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases in Terengganu Saturday.
State Health director Nor Azimi Yunus said the cases involved several families from Johor, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Penang who returned to Terengganu for a grandfather’s funeral.
“Usually, a funeral will be followed by a tahlil event. Forty-five family members attended the event and 15 of them were tested positive for COVID-19.
“There were symptomatic individuals among the family members, hence the huge number of infection. Those individuals should not have made that inter-state travel or should have complied with the SOP to avoid infection,” he said in a posting on his Facebook page today.
The State Health Department recorded 22 new cases of COVID-19 today, bringing the total active cases in the state to 110.
Dr Nor Azimi said the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases due to inter-state travel and family gathering was not the first incident as it had happened before in Besut.
“Several families from Kuantan, Pahang and Johor returned to Besut to visit a sick 100-year-old grandmother and five of them ended up being tested positive for COVID-19, including the grandmother who died soon after.
“There were also neighbours who tested positive for the disease after visiting the deceased’s family. So, please learn the lesson from these incidents. Avoid attending a mass gathering because we cannot be certain that no one is carrying the virus.
“Not that we are disallowing anyone to return to their hometown but they should take precaution and comply with the SOP. If they cannot comply, then prevention is better,” he added.