Dine-ins, non-contact sports allowed for fully vaccinated in Phase One areas

Caretaker Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has announced additional social and economic freedoms for states under Phase One of the National Recovery Programme (NRP), including dining at restaurants. The easing of restrictions would apply only to those who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Besides allowing dining in, Muhyiddin announced that non-contact sports such as golfing and fishing would be allowed. He also disclosed that that night and weekend markets would also be allowed to operate. The common requirement for all the relaxations was that patrons must display their digital vaccination certificates before being allowed to enter. He stressed that it was mandatory for business operators to inspect the digital vaccination certificates before letting the patrons into their premises. He added that dine-ins at restaurants or cafes at club houses are also allowed, but changing and shower rooms must remain closed to ensure that people do not gather after sporting activities to avoid the risk of infection. (Malay Mail)

May be an image of text that says "RELAXATIONS FOR FULLY VACCINATED IN NRP PHASE1 KEY POINTS Dining-in is allowed Patrons must show MySejahtera digital vaccine certificate Parents who are fully vaccinated may dine in with their children aged 17 and below, in strict adherence to SOPs Dine-in activities at restaurants or cafes on clubhouse premises are permitted CREATED AUGUST 19, 2021 TheStar"

King extra cautious before deciding

The King’s move to hold an audience with 114 MPs is part of the process of “making a judgement” under the Federal Constitution before he appoints a new Prime Minister, says constitutional expert Professor Emeritus Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi. He said that as the Constitution is silent on the process of forming a judgement on who is most likely to command the majority of the members of the Dewan Rakyat, the King is free to use any method he sees fit before he appoints the ninth Prime Minister. He also stated that although the King had first requested statutory declarations (SDs) from all 220 MPs of the House, he decided to go a step further and verify the ones who gave the majority votes to Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob as that is the group that counts. He further pointed out that Standing Orders of the House stated that votes can only be counted if the MP is present physically in the Dewan Rakyat. “Therefore, the actions taken by the King before he appoints the next Prime Minister is the action of being extra cautious, but working within the Federal Constitution,” said Shad Saleem. (The Star)

Dr Noor Hisham reminds all to continue adhering to Covid-19 SOPs

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah reminded Malaysians to continue adhering to the Covid-19 SOPs after the announcement of additional social and economic freedoms by caretaker Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin. In a tweet, Dr Noor Hisham said that the easing of some restrictions is for the good of the economy, not because the country is safe from the Covid-19 pandemic. “A reminder to all, many places are opening because of the economy and not because it is safe. Please keep that in mind; please wear a mask, double masks if possible, practice physical distancing and frequent hand washing. Avoid crowded and confined spaces. Stay safe and get vaccinated ASAP,” he said. Yesterday, Muhyiddin announced additional social and economic freedoms for states under Phase One of the National Recovery Programme (NRP), including dining at restaurants, non-contact sports, and night and weekend markets. (Malay Mail)

Hong Kong won’t acknowledge ‘high risk’ Malaysia’s Covid-19 vaccine certs

Malaysians fully vaccinated against Covid-19 may be prevented from entering Hong Kong starting tomorrow after the special administrative region put the country among 25 that it considered “high risk”. Malaysiakini reported today that the new policy requires those vaccinated in the “high-risk” countries to present vaccination certificates in order to enter Hong Kong. However, the required vaccination certificates are reportedly unavailable here while those issued by the Malaysian government were not recognised. This could leave Malaysian students, business travellers and some Hong Kong residents unable to travel to the SAR. Only eight in Hong Kong’s list of “high-risk” countries have access to these authorities — leaving Malaysia and 16 others, such as Brazil, India, and Philippines; without a way onto the island. This could leave Malaysian students, business travellers and some Hong Kong residents unable to travel to the SAR. (Malay Mail)

Rais: Plans in motion to enhance the role of Dewan Negara

Dewan Negara senators are drawing up a proposal to amend the Houses of Parliament (Privileges and Powers) Act to strengthen the role of the upper house, says its president Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim. “The report of the transformative steps will be presented to the King and the ruling government as a means to champion the legislature,” he said. He said the proposals to transform Dewan Negara were drawn up by way of bipartisan consensus. He said the proposed changes would be in line with the concept of separation of powers to ensure that the legislature played a functional role as check and balance. Rais also said that Parliamentary special select committees, which have legal powers, should also play a core role in addressing issues faced by the rakyat for the government to resolve. Among the committees cited by Rais included those involving the people’s well-being, sociocultural matters, communications and education. Dewan Negara comprises 70 senators who serve a three-year term following appointments by the various political parties, 26 of whom are selected by the respective state legislative assemblies. The other 44 senators are appointed by the King. There are currently 54 senators listed under the Parliament website, with 16 vacancies. (The Star)

Facebook and Google’s undersea cable to bypass Malaysia in Asia Pacific

Tech giants Facebook and Google have just announced Apricot, a new subsea cable that will boost connectivity in the Asia Pacific region. The 12,000km long submarine cable will connect Japan, Taiwan, Guam, the Philippines, Indonesia and Singapore, and unfortunately, Malaysia isn’t on the list. This is seen as yet another missed opportunity for Malaysia which aims to have the most submarine cable landings in South-east Asia by 2025 under MyDigital. According to Facebook’s statement, Apricot will feature “state-of-the-art submersible reconfigurable optical add-drop multiplexer employing wavelength selective switch for a gridless and flexible bandwidth configuration, based on space division multiplexing design.” Expected to launch in 2024, the cable system will provide an initial design capacity of more than 190 Tbps to meet rising data demands in the region as well as to support existing cable systems including Echo and Bifrost. It added that the new cable will help to meet the growing demand for 4G, 5G and broadband services in the region. MyIX had raised concerns that tech giants are giving Malaysia a pass due to the ongoing cabotage issue. (Malay Mail)