On the 25th of December, two cases of the COVID-19 Omicron variant were confirmed in Johor.
The cases involved a couple who had returned after performing the pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, according to R Vidyananthan, chairman of the State Health and Environment Committee.
“The pair flew to Saudi Arabia on the 4th of December and returned to Malaysia on the 16th of December through Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).”
“Upon their return, PCR tests were done on the couple, and the samples were forwarded to the Institute of Medical Research for genome sequencing, which showed that they were positive for the Omicron mutation,” Vidyananthan said in a statement.
He said the couple is currently undergoing isolation at their home in Johor Bahru.
“All of the two cases’ close contacts have been identified, and home surveillance orders have been issued,” Vidyananthan added.
Following the development, he advised that all Johoreans returning from overseas, particularly those performing the pilgrimage should strictly adhere to the mandatory quarantine rules.
“Failure to follow the instructions would result in the COVID-19 virus, particularly the Omicron version spreading among family members and the community,” Vidyananthan warned.
In light of the impending New Year’s celebrations, he added, the state Health Department would like to encourage people to take self-tests before participating in group activities or visiting family and friends.
“The department also actively encourages people who are eligible to obtain the COVID-19 vaccination booster doses so that they can have the best protection against the virus,” Vidyananthan added.