That’s one way to take care of rule-breakers!
The Health Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, has just announced that penalties for people who smoke in public non-smoking areas may include social work such as garbage collecting, cutting grass and even cleaning public toilets, and are currently being considered.
He goes on to say that the existing penalty of making offenders pay money isn’t enough as it makes the rich feel like they can just get away with it. While no action has been taken to implement this policy as of yet, the minister has expressed his keen interest in putting this social work penalty to practice.
According to Astro Awani, the minister urged the Ministry of Health (MOH) employees to set a good example for the community by respecting the ban implemented on smoking in MOH certified public areas.
Nonetheless, everybody makes mistakes. And Dr Dzulkefly knows that too. He jokingly said that the percentage of smokers within the MOH remains “a big secret” and admits that some of his own staff can’t give up smoking that easily.
Since the start of this year, an official ban on smoking was implemented in all air-conditioned eateries, open-air restaurants, and bars, including those on the street.
The existing penalty on smokers that are caught committing the act in restricted areas is a monetary fine that could go up to a maximum of RM10,000 or imprisonment for two years.
Education enforcement for dining establishments concerning the policy was initially set to go on for six months but has recently been extended to the end of December this year.
The Minister of Health adds that 129,198 locations have been inspected since the enforcement of the policy and 30,698 premises have been issued notices of smoking bans accordingly.
Unless you’d like to give our admirable public custodians a voluntary hand, we’d suggest you stick to smoking where it’s legal!
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