Nightclubs across Malaysia are set to reopen this weekend after two years due to COVID-19, although there could be new rules enforced that prohibit dancing.
- READ MORE: The Peachskins: the Malaysian indie band that roped Najib Razak into promoting their music
Malaysian Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced the reopening of nightclubs from May 15 in late April. Yesterday (May 10), David Gurupatham, the co-founder of the trade coalition Industries Unit, shared with Free Malaysia Today that there may be a “no dancing, no close contact” stipulation in effect.
Although these rules have yet to be confirmed, Gurupatham urged partygoers to expect “that there will be no dancing and perhaps a situation where we will have to implement crowd control to make sure it’s not too crowded”. He added: “We don’t want any sudden spikes which could lead to clubs being closed again.”
Gurupatham also noted that the safe reopening of clubs would provide stable employment to those in the industry who were unable to work regularly over the past two years due to COVID-19. Gurupatham also estimated that between 150,000 to 250,000 nightlife workers were affected by the lockdowns.
Jeremy Lim, vice-president of the Restaurant and Bistro Owners Association, told Free Malaysia Today he agreed with the current “no dancing” rule in favour of public health, though he said these rules should be adjusted according to the country’s hospitalisation and infectivity rates.
Club Kyō in Kuala Lumpur celebrated the impending return to business on social media, declaring on May 9: “It’s about time!”
It's about time! ✨#letskyo #clubkyokl #klcc #clubbingkl #clubculture #clubbingasia #waitforit
Malaysians on social media have also shared their reactions to the potential “no dancing” rule – check out some tweets below.
The reason was no close contact, but LRT today was packed like sardine, everyone was rubbing each other, so how?
— Rodney Clement (@rodneyclement) May 10, 2022
They never fail to come up with nonsensical rules. What about karaoke centres? Will there be a “no singing and dancing” rule? https://t.co/LriIgTRqPm
— Habee (@SenoritaHabee) May 10, 2022
Mannequin challenge activated!
— Ceddy (@CeddyOrNot) May 10, 2022
— baek yijin stan acc (@fvrith) May 10, 2022
On the concerts front, Malaysia will welcome the likes of Justin Bieber and Russ to its shores in October and November respectively – its first major shows since April 2020. July will also see the return of Penang’s Northern Music Festival led by pop-punk outfit One Buck Short, metalcore band Massacre Conspiracy and punk trio No Good.