Sarawak sticking to 7am to 7pm MCO time restriction: Dr Sim

Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian

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KUCHING, Mar 31: Sarawak will not be following the new nationwide time restriction under the Movement Control Order (MCO) from 8am to 8pm.

Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian said the state will stick to its original 7am to 7pm schedule that was enforced earlier.

Yesterday, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that during the second phase of MCO which comes into effect on April 1, essential service business establishments including food deliveries and gas stations would be allowed to operate from 8am to 8pm.

“This decision is in view of the fact that if we were to change it could result in confusion among the public and disruption to the operations of businesses and especially those in the logistics and transportation sectors,” Sim pointed out at a press conference today.

He asserted that whatever the new time restriction is, the objective is still the same, which is urging people to stay at home.

“The restriction will allow us to stop further transmission of Covid-19. This is of utmost importance because we still have many cars on the road now,” he added.

Sarawak government had enforced the 7am to 7pm rule on Mar 24 as an additional and stricter measure being enforced to stem the spread of Covid-19.

In enhancing the enforcement of MCO, police will detain those who defy the restriction by staying out between 7pm to 7am, under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Disease Act 1988.

Under Section 24 of the Act, offenders can be jailed no more than two years or fined, or both, if convicted.

Meanwhile, during the MCO, those who obstruct any public servants in discharging their duties can be charged under Section 186 of the Penal Code which is punishable with an imprisonment term which may extend to two years or with a fine which may extend to RM10,000, or both, if convicted. —DayakDaily