With public compliance to the movement control order (MCO) now said to be at 99%, you’d think that there would be fewer cases of MCO-related offences and arrests going into the third week. That however isn’t the case, because the number of people being hauled up for being out without a reasonable excuse or challenging authorities continues daily, and at a steady rate.

Senior minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that yesterday (Monday), authorities put up 763 roadblocks across the country, and in the process inspected 443,160 vehicles. The cops detained 403 people for violating the order, down from the 554 arrests recorded on Sunday, but the defence minister said that there was still room for improvement.

“Yesterday was a working day, so perhaps many took the opportunity to go out. Despite a lowering in the rate, the number of arrests are still high compared to that previously. We hope it will continue to become lower this week,” he said at a press briefing earlier today.

He said out of the 403 individuals that were detained yesterday, 347 of them were remanded while 56 were allowed bail. He added that a total of 537 individuals were charged in court yesterday, and that the police have now arrested 6,452 individuals since the MCO began on March 18. The one positive, he said, was that the police has reported that the crime index rate in the country has dropped by 70% since the MCO began.

Ismail Sabri said that while efforts in trying to halt the spread of Covid-19 in the country continue unabated, the public should do their part and obey the instructions given by the government as well as cooperate with the authorities.

Really, with most of us already staying put, there’s no reason to let up on the effort. Please continue to heed the call to stay at home, and if you do head out, keep travel distances short and be mindful of the 10 km limit for the radius of travel.

As a reminder, supermarkets, grocers, restaurants providing takeaways and petrol stations are all limited to 8am-8pm operating hours during phase two of the MCO, and the same goes for food delivery services. Public transport operation hours are now from 6am to 10am and 5pm to 10pm daily, while taxis and ride-hailing vehicles will be permitted to operate from 6am to 10pm.

Also, remember to bring your utility bills as proof of residence that you’re not far from where you are, and adhere to the one-person-per-car rule. Most importantly, no joyrides, unless you want to end up in the slammer, and remember that recording activities at roadblocks with the intention of creating a negative perception of the cops on social media could also get you into trouble with the law.