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KUALA LUMPUR, June 23 -- All public transport operators and service providers in Sabah and Sarawak are reminded to adhere to the specific standard operating procedures (SOPs) related to their respective states that govern their operations.
The Transport Ministry, in a statement today, said due to specific circumstances unique to Sabah and Sarawak, the respective states’ disaster management authorities were allowed to propose SOPs that best suit their local environments during the Movement Control Order (MCO).
However, these SOPs needed to be approved and instructed by the Health director-general accordingly.
“As such, these SOPs may differ from those pertaining to and applicable in other parts of Malaysia.
“This is reflected with an amendment to the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures within Infected Local Areas) (No. 3) Regulations 2021 effective June 22, 2021, which includes a special provision relating to control of movement within the state of Sabah,” read the statement.
The statement was issued in response to reports of an e-hailing driver in Sabah who was issued a compound notice on June 12 for attempting to transport an essential worker across two district borders.
The ministry said following the amendment, the Sabah COVID-19 Disaster Management Committee had also clarified that registered e-hailing and taxi with the requisite approvals based on the National Security Council’s (MKN) SOPs were allowed to travel between the districts of Kota Kinabalu, Putatan and Penampang without needing travel permits from police from June 23.
“These SOPs were designed to suit the developing COVID-19 situation nationwide and their prevention efforts, and therefore subject to updates from time to time.
“The ministry will continue to monitor the situation related to the transport and logistic sectors and advise MKN on best practices to suit the industry at any given time pertaining to efforts to curb COVID-19 transmissions,” it said.
The ministry further explained that in Peninsular Malaysia, taxis and e-hailing vehicles were classified as essential services and permitted to operate interdistrict or interstate only to transport passengers with the requisite approval to do so by the relevant authorities.
Taxi drivers may obtain their approval letters by completing their registrations on the ministry’s SMILE System at https://application.mot.gov.my, while letters for e-hailing drivers will be issued by their respective operators.
“Passengers using taxi or e-hailing services to travel interstate or interdistrict are responsible for ensuring that they carry the required travel permissions according to the latest SOP as published by MKN,” it added.
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