Cover Story, Current Affairs, National

Covid-19 SOP compound: The lawlessness practiced by PN must stop!

 

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Beruas, Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham on Saturday (20 March 2021) lodged a police report at Ayer Tawar Police Station, Perak against the issuing of Covid-19 SOP compounds by police officers and other officials not from the Ministry of Health (MOH). In a statement issued on the same day, Ngeh iterated that offers to compound under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 (Act 342) requires the written consent of the Public Prosecutor first.

The DAP Assemblyman stressed,

 

“The police have no power or authority to issue the offers to compound under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 (Act 342).”

 

This came after police officers nationwide under orders by the government have been issuing compounds of up to RM10,000 under the said Act for breaches of Covid-19 SOPs. Furthermore, other ministry officers have also been issuing the same compounds, including officers from the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MITI) and even local authorities.

 
MP for Beruas, Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham (middle) lodging a police report at Ayer Tawar Police Station.
 

Previously, the Beruas MP has released multiple statements questioning the legality of officers other than from the Ministry of Health (MOH) to issue compound under Act 342, even after its Emergency Ordinance amendment by the government.

In another statement issued by Ngeh on 18 March 2021, he said that under Act 342, only the Director General of Health and his officers authorised by him are authorised to issue compound. Furthermore, Section 25 of Act 342 as amended by the Emergency (Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases)(Amendment) 2021 clearly stated that a compound can only be issued with the consent in writing of the Public Prosecutor.

Ngeh further commented,

 

“I understand that the compounds issued so far are done without the consent of the Public Prosecutor.”

 

The DAP Perak Legal team has also came to the same conclusion as Ngeh that the police do not have authority to issue Covid-19 SOP compounds. Furthermore, they have also received numerous complaints from the public on how they have been issued exorbitant fines by the police ranging from RM1,000 up to even RM50,000.

 
 

The DAP Perak Legal Team itself was formed specifically to look into the matter and will assist pro bono those who have been issued compounds. For the time being, Ngeh calls upon the police to stop issuing further compounds under Act 342 and for de facto Law Minsiter, Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan to declare all summons issued previously as void. He asserted,

 

“I call on the de facto Law Minister to declare all summons issued not by the health ministry officials and/or without the consent of the Public Prosecutor as void and are to be withdrawn.”

 

Ngeh further commented that it is his stand and the stand of DAP that all must cooperate with MOH to combat the spread of Covid-19 including observing all SOPs prescribed by the health ministry. However, all parties must observe and respect the law, something that the PN government seems to neglect.   

Moreover, the Beruas MP claims that this ‘lawlessness’ by the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government has caused public outrage and should be stopped immediately. He stressed,

“The lawlessness practised by the backdoor unelected Perikatan Nasional (PN) government must be stopped.… I call on the police to form a task force to study this issue or refer this matter to the Attorney General.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.