Restaurants and convenience stores in areas under the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) will be allowed to operate until midnight, from today.

Senior minister (security cluster) Ismail Sabri Yaakob told a press conference yesterday that the decision was taken after the government listened to the grouses from members of the public, as well as business owners.

"For example, most Muslims normally go out to get dinner, groceries and other necessities only after Isyak prayers after 9pm. As such, during the CMCO period, when shops close by 10pm, it's been troublesome for many," the New Straits Times (NST) quoted the minister telling his daily COVID-19 related press conference, yesterday.

Under the CMCO, businesses, including eateries and convenience stores, were only allowed to operate until 10pm.

According to Ismail, the operating hours extension will apply to grocery stores, mini markets, convenience stores, restaurants, petrol stations and other businesses that have been allowed to operate during the CMCO.

The government recently lifted CMCO in Melaka,Terengganu, and several districts in Kedah and Johor, while imposing the partial lockdown in Kelantan. Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya, meanwhile, continue to be under CMCO, until Dec 6, and certain quarters have speculated that the lockdown may be further extended, at least until the end of this year, following the spike in the number of COVID-19 cases.

As of yesterday, there are 56,659 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country, with 337 deaths.

The global coronavirus infection and death tally has surpassed 59.4 million, and 1.4 million, respectively. The global recovery rate, meanwhile, stands at 41.1 million.

Source: NST
Photo source: Rojakdaily