Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Armed forces to be given power to arrest as PM announces tough laws against SOP breachers

Stricter laws to ensure greater adherence to Covid-19 SOPs will involve heavier punishments for offenders including business owners.

Other News

China’s treatment of Uighurs is genocide, says Canadian parliament

PM Trudeau has been reluctant to use the word genocide, preferring that Western allies should move together on Chinese human rights issues.

Responding to the challenges of online education

Online teaching and learning is here to stay and academics need to review processes and adopt some simple tips to make online learning more effective.

Masih wujudkan ruang pejabat selepas pasca pandemik?

Kebanyakan syarikat mengatakan mereka bersedia untuk meneruskan trend kerja dari rumah walaupun ruang pejabat tidak akan lenyap sepenuhnya.

Is there room for the office in the post-pandemic world?

Many companies say they are ready to continue the work from home trend although the traditional office space may never completely disappear.

UN pleads for rescue of dehydrated Rohingya adrift in Andaman sea

The boat apparently left southern Bangladesh about 10 days ago but its exact whereabouts are now uncertain.

Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin today said the armed forces will be accorded the power to arrest those who breach health SOPs to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, one of several immediate actions to be taken under the current emergency ordinance.

He said the power to arrest would be given under the Emergency (Essential Powers) Ordinance 2021.

He also announced that stricter laws against SOP offenders would be introduced, as well as the takeover of private facilities for Covid-19 testing.

Muhyiddin however assured that the government would compensate those whose facilities have been taken over under the emergency laws.

He said stricter laws to ensure greater adherence to Covid-19 SOPs will involve heavier punishments for offenders including business owners.

He said Putrajaya is currently working on amending clauses in the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988, the main act governing the management of the Covid-19 health crisis.

Muhyiddin said the stricter laws include the immediate closure of businesses violating SOPs, as well as legal action against those involved in the management of foreign workers, who are among the biggest contributors to the recent spike in Covid-19 infections.

He said under the amendments, offenders will face imprisonment.

Muhyiddin said disciplinary action could also be taken against civil servants including those in managerial positions who breach SOPs.

The prime minister meanwhile underscored the government’s dilemma in the battle against Covid-19, saying it must find a balance between allowing a collapse of the economic sector through a total lockdown, and the spread of Covid-19 through the free movement of people.

“The method at the moment is to allow essential economic sectors to remain open under strict SOPs,” he said in a televised address.

He said data shows that some 59% of Covid-19 infections happen at the workplace.

“I wish to remind everyone that the government will not hestitate to take firm action against anyone who violates the SOPs.

“The government has listened to your views by not shutting down the economy during the movement control order period.

“So please reciprocate this gesture by complying strictly with the SOPs so we can ensure that business and trade will continue to operate while at the same time helping to break the chain of Covid-19 transmissions at the workplace and in the community.”

Election after emergency

Muhyiddin meanwhile called for an end to accusations surrounding the emergency proclamation, which was invoked by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong last month under his constitutional powers.

He maintained that the state of emergency “has no other objective but to contain the Covid-19 pandemic and save the people’s lives”.

“As the head of the government, I respect our country’s constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy system.”

Muhyiddin also repeated his assurance that he would dissolve Parliament as soon as the health crisis has been overcome.

Follow us on Telegram for the latest updates: https://t.me/malaysianow

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news and analyses.

Related Articles

Is there room for the office in the post-pandemic world?

Many companies say they are ready to continue the work from home trend although the traditional office space may never completely disappear.

New York City movie theatres to reopen

New York City's seven-day rolling average of positive test results is hovering above the 4% mark, down from more than 6% in early January.

Cancer survivors encouraged to take Covid-19 jab, says deputy health DG

Cancer survivors who had their last treatment three to six months before receiving the vaccine should have no problem, he says.

US passes 500,000 Covid-19 deaths

The figure comes as some signs of hope are emerging in the world's hardest-hit country, with millions of people now vaccinated and winter's massive spike in infections dropping.

First vaccine dose cuts transmission and hospitalisation, UK studies show

The study team says the findings are applicable to other countries using the Pfizer and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines.