MCO enforcement: Sarawak police not looking to pick fights with motorists

Datuk Aidi Ismail

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By Lian Cheng

KUCHING, April 2: The police will try to avoid quarrelling with motorists who give “thousand and one” excuses to defy the Movement Control Order (MCO).

Sarawak Police Commissioner Datuk Aidi Ismail said it has not been easy for the enforcement officers to carry out their duties during the MCO as they have been trying “not to quarrel with the public”.

During the MCO, only one person may leave the house to buy essentials but there are still many people who go out in pairs.

Aidi said he understood that there were situations which called for two persons to do the shopping as the list may be long and the amount needed may be in huge quantities, and the police are not enforcing the regulation to the letter.

“There is only this much enforcement personnel can do when we try to avoid quarrelling with the public. They can always give excuses of all sorts to pass the roadblock especially when we try to avoid quarrelling with the public. At the end of the day, it all boils down to the civic-mindedness of the public themselves to see the MCO is effectively implemented,” Aidi told Dayakdaily.

On a related matter, he said the police will enforce the new 10km-radius travel restriction today.

“The new regulation of 10km travel restriction was announced on April 1. We will enforce it here in Sarawak too,” he emphasised.

The new regulation gazetted under the Prevention and Control of Diseases Act 1988 was announced by Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba. From April 1, residents are prohibited from traveling beyond 10km from their residence to source for groceries and other daily necessities.

Permits or written permission may be obtained from the police if residents have the need to travel beyond a 10km-radius during the MCO.

Aidi said this new regulation is much needed to stop certain people who somehow prefer to travel far to “buy food and daily necessities”.

“When we implement this new 10km-radius regulation, then people from Serian, for example, cannot come all the way to Kuching to buy food and other daily necessities.

“Under the new regulation, they can now only buy from Serian Market, and not come all the way down to Satok to buy food.

“There will be some additional enforcement for us to do so (implement the new regulation),” said Aidi. — DayakDaily