Perikatan Nasional (PN)’s Covid-19 SOP compounds are still confusing and unjust despite the recent reclassification and guideline given by de facto Law Minister Takiyuddin Hassan and Health Minister Dr Adham Baba. This is according to ADUN for Bukit Gasing, Rajiv Rishyakaran in a press statement on Sunday (21 March 2021) which questioned the disproportianate compound in comparison to the offence committed.
Rajiv further stressed that PN has still failed to address several pertinent issues despite the reclassfification of offences. These issues include the justification for the exorbitant increase in fine amount as well as not having proper guidelines for certain SOPs.
The ADUN for Bukit Gasing commented,
“They (PN) must justify the reason for increasing the fines for Category Three offences ‘that involve low transmission risk of the virus and would not lead to a wide-scale impact to the community’ – specifically not wearing masks and failure to record details on MySejahtera or on the log book before entering premise.”
Rajiv added that the descritption for Category Three itself indicated that the offences are minor and inconsequential violations, yet the compound for it is higher than even the minimum wage of Malaysia which is RM1,200.
Furthermore, Rajiv reminded PN how a bi-partisan petition for fines to be lowered to RM250 for first offence was ignored by them. In fact, the PN government even refused to answer to Parliament.
The current disproportiante fines are both unfair and unjustified, especially since the guidelines set for the SOPs are vague, unclear and constantly changing. Rajiv added,
“In the issue of wearing masks for example, there are still no proper guidelines in place for when and where to wear a mask.”
Previously, the Senior Minister (Security Cluster), Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that the wearing of face masks is only compulsory in crowded places. Yet, a shopkeer in Johor was still issued a fine inside her own shop when there were no customers present.
Rajiv also questioned the efficacy of MySejahtera in contact tracing when people are not alerted or contacted through the app despite being identified as a close contact or even casual contact to a Covid-19 infection. He then urged,
“The government should immediately withdraw and annul all summons related to contact details and MySejahtera until we actually start using this data for contact tracing and mass testing.”
Following this, the DAP lawmaker calls upon both Ismail Sabri and Takiyuddin Hassan to rectify the situation and bring justice to law enforcement when it comes to Covid-19 related offences. Enforcement should be made for public health and not just to be punitive to the rakyat. – The Rocket.