On 11 March 2020, the World Health Organization had declared the COVID-19 virus a pandemic. Locally, the spike in COVID-19 cases has resulted in the implementation of the Movement Control Order ("MCO") on 18 March 2020 and its extension for another two (2) weeks until April 14 2020.

With most Malaysians living in strata schemes nation-wide, the Ministry of Housing and Local Government ("KPKT") has issued a directive to all Commissioners of Buildings on the management of strata schemes during the MCO period. Some of the salient points are:

1. All residents, tenants and/or occupants are encouraged to restrict all movement throughout the entire strata scheme save for "critical" matters that require attending to. The list of "critical" matters include:

(a) water supply;

(b) electric supply;

(c) telecommunications;

(d) sewerage;

(e) solid waste management and public cleansing;

(f) medical;

(g) operations of mechanical and/or electrical machineries especially lift services; and

(h) control of safety of the strata scheme.

2.All residents, tenants and/or occupants are encouraged to adhere to all overseas travel bans imposed by the Government and refrain from having foreign visitors into each respective strata scheme.

3. All residents, tenants and/or occupants are encouraged to practice social distancing as well as to ensure the full implementation of health, control and sanitary measures.

4. All forms of large gatherings should be cancelled, postponed and avoided including the hosting of all Annual General Meetings (AGM) and Extraordinary General Meetings (EGM).

5. Access to all common areas and facilities such as the multi-purpose hall, gymnasium, swimming pool, sauna, park, surau should be closed where possible and/or restricted throughout the entire duration of the MCO.

6. All residential shop-lots and business premises within the strata scheme as well as educational institutions like pre-schools should be closed save for those providing essential services.

7. All renovation, repair and maintenance works should be postponed where unnecessary.

8. The Management Office and Management Agents managing any essential services within the strata scheme should operate at a minimum and utilize all appropriate modes of execution (e.g. all transactions, where possible should be done online). The Management Office must be closed to the general public. However, the management shall ensure that all essential and critical services can still be carried out.

9. An active and actionable communication channel should also be created within the strata scheme to ensure that all information and complaints can be appropriately channeled to ensure that no essential and/or critical services are at jeopardy.

Conclusion

As a global community, the highest priority is to identify any opportunities to flatten the curve and respond to this challenge. In the midst of the current lockdown, we encourage all to #stayathome within their respective strata schemes to protect the community we belong to.

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