Smoking ban: Coffee shop owners ask for more time to implement policy

Lau (second left) presenting a token of appreciation to Teck Yun (second right) at the dinner gathering, while others look on.

By Jaythaleela K

MIRI, March 10: The enforcement of the smoking ban which commenced statewide on March 1 is seen as praiseworthy, but coffee shop owners have appealed for time to adjust to the policy.

“We hope that the government can give us chances and make it a win-win situation,” said Miri Coffee Shop Association chairman Lau Ting Sing.

Speaking at the Miri Coffee Shop Association’ 43th Gala Night and annual dinner at a leading restaurant on Saturday, Lau added, for the said owners to deal with smokers who regularly frequent their shops is not an easy task.

“We are appealing for the government’s understanding on this matter,” he said.

Some 500 members were present at the event. Among those present were Malaysia-Singapore Coffee Shop Proprietors’ General Association president Datuk Ho Su Mong, Federation of Miri Division Chinese Association chairman Datuk Hii Teck Yun who represented guest-of-honour Datuk Hii King Chiong, Miri Mayor Adam Yii, Senator Alan Ling, Piasau assemblyman Datuk Sebastian Ting, and Pujut assemblyman Dr Ting Tiong Choon.

Lau also calling on all coffee shop owners to make cleanliness as their priority.

“Coffee shop operators must ensure that their premises are clean and not neglect cleanliness,” he emphasised.

Meanwhile, King Chiong in his speech text which was read out by Teck Yun, encouraged coffee shops owners to be creative and embrace technology to be relevant.

King Chiong said technology plays a crucial role within society in today’s world.

He added that the coffee shop business has existed for hundreds of years, and in order for it to be relevant it is a must for the owners to embrace technology.

“Transform to cater for more business,” he urged members.

There were also donations and pledges presented during the event, including from King Chiong who pledged RM10,000 to Miri Coffee Shop Association, from Datuk Ho Su Mong who gave a cheque worth at RM5,000. — DayakDaily