Sarawak to implement smoking ban on March 1 — Dr Sim

Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian

KUCHING, Jan 24: Smoking will not be allowed at all eateries in Sarawak starting March 1 this year.

The Sarawak Cabinet today agreed to implement the smoking ban at all eateries in the state, said Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian in a statement.

“The decision to ban smoking at eating places is for the health of the general public.

“However, with the approval of the local authorities, licensed operators may designate smoking spots at an area not less than three metres away from the nearest table from where food is being served, and it shall be the responsibility of the licensee to ensure that such a place is kept clean at all times,” he said.

Dr Sim added that the State Cabinet had also agreed that the first six months (from March 1) will be an “educational enforcement period”, where no compound would be issued during this period.

After the said period, offenders found smoking at banned places can be fined up to RM10,000 or be imprisoned to a maximum term of two years, while eatery owner who failed to put up a `No Smoking’ sign at their premises can be fined up to RM3,000 or face a maximum six months imprisonment.

The federal government banned smoking at all restaurants and food joint in Peninsular Malaysia starting Jan 1 this year. Sabah will implement their smoking ban next month (Feb 1). — DayakDaily