KUCHING, Apr 24: Commercial banks need to adjust their operation strategies and rethink its capacity including customer service to help and address customers’ needs during this Covid-19 crisis especially when the Movement Control Order (MCO) has been extended for another two weeks.
Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing has thus called on banks to readjust its opening hours of 10am to 4.30pm during the MCO period.
“One of the most frustrating problems is the banking facilities in recent weeks. Futher added to the frustration is only a few bank outlets are opened and manned by minimum staff for a limited time only,” he said in a press statement today.
He thus suggested that the Ministry of Finance (MoF) should mobilise the Mobile Bank to serve small towns in rural areas in order to reduce the mobility of people.
Masing could have been reffering to some of the problems faced by urban and rural folks who have travelled out and waited in long lines at banks across major cities and towns just to withdraw and collect their cash aid.
In this unprecedented and unusual time for Malaysia, he emphasised that Sarawak must adapt and take unprecedented steps to fight the Covid-19 pandemic with new standard operating procedure (SOP) in place.
“The thought of ‘we have never done this before’ cannot be used as an excuse to do business as usual,” he said.
Moreover, he proposed easing restrictions of MCO in green zone areas such as allowing residents living in flats, condominiums and apartments to have some time to go outside for a walk but limiting the number of people allowed.
“Businesses, offices and contract works in green zone areas that can strictly comply to social distancing should be allowed to operate in Sarawak as well, with requirements for using face masks at all time and that sanitisers and hand washing liquid be provided to all employees,” he added.
While measures must be in place to protect everybody from Covid-19, Masing stressed that everyone also had a role to play to bring Malaysia back on its feet.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin had announced the third extension to the MCO, which will be effective from April 28 to May 12 under its fourth phase.
During a televised national address last night (April 23), Muhyiddin said the decision was made after going through the data provided by the Ministry of Health (MoH).
He however did not rule out the possibility that the MCO could be further extended after May 12, subject to how the Covid-19 situation developed.
During Phase 4 of the MCO, he added that the government will monitor the developments before making any further decision.—DayakDaily