During his televised speech in conjunction with the Workers’ Day, Prime Minister Tan Sri Dato’ Hj Muhyiddin Mohd Yassin announced that the government has decided to relax some restrictions stipulated in the Movement Control Order (MCO) beginning 4 May 2020.
Many business activities will be allowed to start operation again. Sports activities that are performed individually or in a group not exceeding ten people and without involving physical contact have also been given the lift-off. Government and private offices are also allowed to resume operations under special procedures. All these relaxations, however, should still observe the basic safety precautions which include social distancing, the wearing of face mask and use of hand sanitizers.
Some members of the public nevertheless have raised concerns, fearing that the relaxations are too early and could consequently lead the emergence of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic which has been said could be more dangerous and damaging than the current outbreak. They cited some examples of reemergence of COVID-19 infected cases in countries such as China, Canada, German and Japan. Some of these countries have been forced to re-impose lockdowns in order to curb the second wave of the pandemic.
The writer however believes that the decision by the government have been made after making several important considerations and consultations with relevant experts and consultants. History has taught us how some wars and battles were lost due to treason or betrayal. The fall of the Malacca Sultanate in 1511, the defeat of Austrian army in the First World War and the loss of Muslim army in the Battle of Ain Jalut in 658H were some of the examples.
In other words, the losses suffered by the defeated parties were due to the enemy within. In the current context of the war against COVID-19, the writer is of the opinion that having a negative attitude is the enemy within us that could cost us the war. Our attitude is the deciding factor in ensuring victory or loss against this COVID-19. Hold the positive attitude by abiding to the operational procedures and we will win it. On the other hand, take the negative attitude and we will witness the pandemic makes its second coming and causes more casualties.
Similar to deciding on starting the first phase of MCO, the writer believes that it was not an easy decision for the Malaysian government to ease the restrictions in the fourth phase of the control order. The government is heavily divided between to stick to the restrictions and to heal the economic situation which has been adversely affected since the beginning of MCO and consequently could also worsen the well-being of the country.
It is really up to the rakyat now to eradicate any negative attitude to defy the order and abide by the operation procedures in making sure the war against COVID-19 will end in a victory. Be a fighter, help the nation. Get well soon Malaysia!
Dr. Azmi Abdul Latiff
Deputy Dean,Centre For Language Studies
Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia
Image Credit: Berita Harian