This Is How Students Stranded On Campus Can Go Home During The MCO

The government will bear the cost of bringing these students back home via bus this Ramadan.

Cover image via Bernama via FMT & detikNews

Defence Minister Ismail Sabri has provided more information on how students stranded on campuses can return home during the Movement Control Order (MCO), which has been extended to 12 May

During the National Security Council's press conference today, 24 April, Ismail said higher education students will be allowed to return to their hometown in batches beginning Monday, 27 April.

However, their movement will be strictly regulated to ensure that they do not make any detour to places other than home.

Image via SAYS/Facebook

The Defence Minister said only students stranded in green zones are allowed to leave their respective campuses

In explaining the decision, Ismail said these students have been quarantined on campus for over a month now, and there no reported cases. Hence, they are considered "clean".

Students studying in campuses that are in red zones are prohibited to balik kampung.

According to Malaysiakini, green zones refer to areas with zero recorded COVID-19 cases, while red zones are areas with more than 41 reported cases.

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via EdgeProp

Students who do not have transport will make their trip home via buses provided by the government

Ismail said all students will undergo COVID-19 screening before heading home.

Furthermore, he added that the bus will only carry the half capacity to ensure the social distancing measure is met.

"If there are two seats on the bus, one will be left empty. If the bus can carry 40 passengers, then only 20 students can come aboard," Ismail explained.

He said students will be shuttled from the campus to the closest police station or government agency they live in.

From there, Ismail said they will be picked up by local authorities or frontliners, and they will be dropped off at their front door.

"This method will give them no room to go anywhere else. From campus to a police station, then straight to their home," Ismail said.

The government will bear the cost of the whole journey, including a meal and a face mask.

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via New Straits Times

Students with their own vehicles are allowed to drive home, provided that they do not travel across any state and are driving alone

Ismail said each vehicle can only have one individual, fetching another student is strictly prohibited.

Also, they will need to drive to the nearest police station from their campus to obtain a travel permit first. They are only allowed to be on the road from 9pm to 9am to avoid congestion.

As for students who wish to return to Sabah and Sarawak, the Defence Minister said that the government will provide flights for them.

However, they will be subjected to a 14-day quarantine unless the Sabah and Sarawak governments decide otherwise.

Further details will be provided by the Ministry of Higher Education, said Ismail

Image via Malaysiakini

According to him, some 53,000 students - or 85% - will be part of the exodus, while the remaining 15% chose to remain on campus.

"Meaning, not all students are returning home," said the Defence Minister, explaining that some might still need to attend online classes but their hometowns do not have active Internet.

"Hence, the government will continue providing essentials such as food and drinks to these students who remain on campus."

You can read Ismail's full announcement on this Twitter thread or in the press conference here.

Remember to #JustStayAtHome. Watch the latest update on the COVID-19 situation:

Yesterday, 23 March, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced that the MCO has been extended to 12 May:

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