Lawyer-activist Siti Kasim today lashed out at Federal Territories Minister Khalid Samad over the announcement that entertainment outlets in the city would have to abide by the 1am closing time stated in their licence beginning next year.
In a Facebook post, she said the people were not children to be told where they could and could not go after 1am.
“We are free people and we have the right to self-determination. If you think you can abuse your powers by using laws in a coating of ‘morality’, think again,” she added.
Yesterday, Khalid said there were many entertainment outlets in the city which were supposed to close by 1am but remained open as late as 5am.
He said the Kuala Lumpur City Hall would also review the operating hours of outlets that had been given special permission to open until 5am to cater to tourists but which had abused that privilege by allowing locals in.
He said this should be seen as a reminder for people to spend more time and money with their families.
However, Siti Kasim accused Khalid of making it “a battle of superiority rather than an attempt to walk with us”.
“It’s not the laws that curtail our freedom, it’s your beliefs that see them as chains,” she added.
According to the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (Matta), there were 12.29 million tourist arrivals in Kuala Lumpur last year.
Matta warned that the early closing time would have a negative impact on tourism and a domino effect on other businesses as well.