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By Wendy John
SIBU, Jan 2: A random check on coffeeshops here today showed that most eating outlets in the central business district (CBD) area were not giving single use plastic straws to customers.
The “Say No to Plastic Straw’ campaign initiated by Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) started on January 1, 2020 and is aimed at conserving the environment.
David Michael, the operator of a newly opened coffeeshop at Jalan Foochow, said he had complied with the ruling to
prevent himself from falling afoul of the law.
However he said he had a hard time explaining the situation to some customers who are still not aware of this new ruling.
“When we served them drinks minus the plastic straw, some of them argued for and demanded it. I explained to them that this is the council ruling which we have to strictly comply with,” he said.
SMC Public Health and Municipal Services chairwoman, Councillor Rhoda Ting disclosed that according to feedback that she gathered few months ago, most eating outlets supported the campaign.
However she “caught” a coffeeshop on January 1 giving out straws.
“The operator must have thought I was one of his customers. I asked him why he was still giving out plastic straws. He replied that he needs to clear the stock,” she said.
Ting said operators of eating outlets had been given ample time last year to clear their stock before the full implementation of the campaign.
The council enforcement team, she disclosed, had started enforcing the ruling today at the CBD area first.
Those caught not complying with the ruling =would be issued a warning letter.
“If they are given three warning letters within a year, their operating licence will be cancelled. This is one of the conditions in the issuing of licences which they need to comply with,” she added.
There are more than 700 eating outlets under the SMC jurisdiction. — DayakDaily