House visits, lion dances, operas not allowed during Chinese New Year: Ismail Sabri

Edited image of Ismail Sabri Yaakob and a lion dance performance. Photo: Coconuts
Edited image of Ismail Sabri Yaakob and a lion dance performance. Photo: Coconuts

It’s going to be a really, really quiet Chinese New Year celebration this year with house visiting as well as lion dance and opera performances prohibited during the occasion as part of new COVID-19 safety measures. 

Defense Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced the updates during his daily address today, a week before ushering the year of the ox on Feb. 12. The new rules apply to all of Malaysia except Sarawak, which is under the more relaxed Conditional Movement Control Order. 

“Celebrate Chinese New Year at home and have dinner with the people who live in the same house,” Ismail said. “Visiting is not allowed.”

“The Sarawak government is still working on the state’s specific SOPs for celebrating Chinese New Year,” he later said.

Worshipping at temples has been restricted to just five committee members from each religious institution. 

The new rules come as Malaysia extends its Movement Control Order till Feb. 18. 

Malaysia has reported 231,483 cases and 826 deaths since the outbreak began, with huge spikes of new cases in recent weeks. 

Other stories to check out:

Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown goes online ahead of locked down Chinese New Year

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