Ching Ming cemetery visits’ poser for Sibu folks

Chiang Chuan Association advising the public to follow the SOP while at the cemetery.

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SIBU, March 26: The action of cemetery managements here in not putting up MySejahtera QR code and log book during Ching Ming (Tomb Sweeping Day) has posed a dilemma among the people here.

Without this code and log book, those going to the cemetery would be violating the standard operating procedures (SOP) of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) and could be fined.

A housewife, Chua Siok Tin, 64, said the matter had put her in a limbo.

“We have already bought paper money costing more than RM700 excluding fruits and cakes for offering to our late parents. I have discussed with my siblings and we are undecided of whether to go to the cemetery or not. If we go there, it will be at our own responsibility,” she said.

She said they also could not decide what to do with the prayer paraphernalia should they not observe Ching Ming.

“I could not burn the paper money in front of my house either as I do not keep photos of my late parents. We need to have their photos so that the money could be “forwarded” to them,” she said.

Meanwhile, a member of the public, Roy Ting, 62, suggested that the local authority put up the MySejahtera code and log book at the entrance of cemeteries so as to solve the matter.

“Cemetery managements had made such a decision and for the people to be able to go to the cemetery with a peace of mind, the local authority, perhaps should step in to put up the code,” he suggested.

Sibu United Chinese Graveyard Association chairman Teo Boon Siew said the cemetery managements here by doing that wanted to discourage people from observing the festival as they were concern with the severity of the Covid-19 spread in Sibu.

“There are 21 cemeteries covering a total of 100ha under the association. The cemetery managements feel that it was better for the people not to visit cemeteries for their own safety during this Ching Ming,” he said.

“The various Chinese clan associations have decided as such on their own and it has nothing to do with us,” he added.

“We have put up banners telling people to follow the SOP set by the State Disaster Management Committee at the entrance of every cemetery,” he said, added that his association could only advise those intending to visit the cemeteries to adhere to the SOP.

SDMC has approved the observance of Ching Ming from March 20 to April 14 subject to strict SOP.

This includes visiting hours being restricted from 4am to noon for cemeteries and 4am to 4pm for columbariums. Eight members of a family are allowed to go to the graves while only two at columbariums or memorial halls.

The elderly, children below 12 years old and individuals with chronic diseases are advised to refrain from participating in the festival. — DayakDaily