This article first appeared in EdgeProp.my, on May 16, 2020.
KUALA LUMPUR (May 16): Foreigners under Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme will be allowed to reenter the country beginning tomorrow, according to the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry in a Malaysiakini report today.
The report said the move is a special exemption as foreigners are barred from entering Malaysia since March 18 due to the movement control order (MCO) to curb the spread of Covid-19.
"Malaysia has made a judicious decision to allow members of MM2H stranded abroad to return to their lovely homes in Malaysia, following the easing of the MCO imposed since March 18 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
"In this regards, the stranded MM2H members may reenter Malaysia beginning from May 17 onwards.
"While the government welcomes home the stranded MM2H members, they have to comply with all MCO requirements.
"This includes a medical screening at KL International Airport and to observe a 14-day quarantine at the quarantine station and to bear the accommodation cost at the respective quarantine station," Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Nancy Shukri said in a statement cited by the Malaysiakini report.
Nancy said based on her ministry's records, 253 people, including their dependents, have been stranded abroad and requested to return to Malaysia.
They were not allowed to reenter Malaysia due to a blanket ban on foreigners under the MCO even though they reside in Malaysia under the MM2H programme.
Malaysiakini previously highlighted the desperate situation some MM2H members have faced while stranded abroad with a family stating that they no longer want to be part of the programme and only wish to collect their belongings in Malaysia and leave.
Nancy said the government is concerned and share the plight of MM2H members stranded abroad during the MCO.
"We hope they understand the challenges faced by the government in dealing with the scourge of Covid-19 that had been spreading rapidly throughout the country.
"The government has given its utmost priority to protect the populace including the MM2H community from the scourge of Covid-19, as well as to secure Malaysia's borders from the spread of the virus.
"The prompt and effective approach undertaken by the government helped to contain and flatten the curve of the pandemic," she said.
According to Malaysiakini, Nancy said the government wishes all MM2H members a safe journey back to their second home in Malaysia to be united with their loved ones.
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