Senior Minister for Security Ismail Sabri Yaakob has promised to come down hard on those caught at pubs and nightclubs after a record 600 were arrested yesterday for flouting the recovery movement control order (RMCO).
“We can see that activities in nightclubs still continue. Even though we don’t allow them to open, many flout the law. InsyaAllah (God willing), we will take sterner action.
“In terms of the number of arrests, the numbers are high because a big part is from (arrests at) nightclubs and pubs,” he told a press conference.
“Maybe yesterday’s numbers were high because it was Merdeka and people wanted to celebrate. That could be why there was such a big increase.”
Police arrested 778 individuals for various offences under the RMCO yesterday, with the rest detained for offences such as participating in activities that made physical distancing difficult and failing to wear face masks.
Pubs and nightclubs, which remain shut under the RMCO, have consistently ranked among the highest in terms of arrests by the Covid-19 task force teams which carry out RMCO compliance checks each day.
When announcing the extension of the RMCO last Friday, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin reminded Malaysians that nightclubs and entertainment centres will remain closed until Dec 31 as it would be hard to ensure health protocols, such as social distancing, are adhered to.
Stating that the topic of nightclubs and pubs was discussed during today’s special ministerial meeting, Ismail reminded the public that the police can not only issue compounds but also arrest the patrons and business operators – and charge them in court.
Ismail said he wants local authorities to accompany the police on the raids so that they can cancel operators’ business licences immediately.
“Like I’ve said before, nightclubs and pubs are not allowed to open yet but they are doing so illegally,” he said.
“This is wrong in the eyes of the law.
“We guarantee stern action will be taken. Even in Europe, pubs and nightclubs are still not allowed to operate.”
Source : FMT