KOTA BHARU, April 18 — Kelantan today records the highest COVID-19 infectivity rate (Rt) or R-nought (R0) in the country, at 1.32, compared with the national rate of 1.19.

Menteri Besar, Datuk Ahmad Yakob said that this was following a drastic surge of COVID-19 cases, forcing the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO) in seven districts in the state, from Friday until April 29.

To date, he said that the results of tests on 2,627 samples for COVID-19 had yet to be obtained, and even more worryingly, the use of beds at hospitals and COVID-19 Quarantine and Low Risk Treatment Centres (PKRC) was increasing.

“A total of 23 per cent of cases detected did not involve close contact, and this indicates that the infection in the community is very high.

“Schools in the MCO areas have been ordered to close, as 30 per cent of the infections involve staff at the schools. As such, several measures will be taken to overcome the proliferation of COVID-19 at places of work, schools, mosques and communities,” he said in a statement here, today.

Ahmad said that the state government also urged Muslims in the state to hold the Solat Hajat (prayer of need) in mosques and at home, to curb the COVID-19 pandemic during the MCO.

He said that Muslims were also asked to increase the reading of the Quran, and to give alms during the period.

“Hopefully, the pandemic can be curbed by practicing taqarrub (acts which bring Muslims closer to Allah) and the blessings of Ramadan,” he said.

Yesterday, Kelantan recorded 225 new cases with 28 active clusters.

Earlier, the Kelantan Education Department directed all schools and educational institutions in the seven districts placed under MCO to be closed from today until April 24.


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