Most who returned from Tokyo Olympics quarantined in hotels

Most of those who returned from the Tokyo Olympics are based at various quarantine hotels in the Klang Valley - based on my checks thus far.

This comes as starting today, travellers who have been fully vaccinated will undergo the mandatory 14-day quarantine at home.

It is unclear if all the vendors and volunteers at the Summer Games have all returned from Tokyo as the Summer Games ended over the weekend. 

Health authorities have expressed concern about the new Lambda variant. The variant was detected in Tokyo three days before the Olympics officially started.

The call for fully vaccinated Malaysians to be home quarantined received mixed responses as critics argued the returning travellers would pose a risk to their family members and possibly the general public.

There has not been any Lambda variant detected in the country to date.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, had on his Facebook page on Aug 8, highlighted the first confirmed case of Lambda variant in Japan. It was detected in a woman who arrived from Peru on July 20.

The woman, in her 30s, had tested positive for the coronavirus in a quarantine check at the Haneda Airport in Tokyo. She had no symptoms.

The Lambda variant was first detected in Peru in August last year and had been spreading in South America. The variant is said to be more infectious and have a stronger resistance to vaccines.

Dr Noor Hisham's posting at 7.57pm came some three hours after Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced that Malaysians and non-Malaysian residents who were fully vaccinated would only need to quarantine at home upon their return to the country.

Muhyiddin, had in a televised address, said the decision was made based on "data and science" and that the new regulation would take effect starting today.

Universiti Malaya virologist Prof Dr Sazaly Abu Bakar was quoted by Harian Metro as saying the new variants such as Lambda dan Delta Plus can cause difficulty for the health authorities to control the pandemic in the country. He added home quarantine was unsuitable due to lack of enforcement.

For the record, those who have received both doses of the Covid-19 vaccines could still catch the coronavirus.


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