Sibu night market to reopen

The site of the night market in Sibu.

SIBU: The night market in the business district here will reopen today after being closed since the implementation of the movement control order (MCO) on March 18.

Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) chairman Clarence Ting said the night market on Jalan Cross would be open from 5pm to 10pm in accordance with the standard operating procedures (SOP).

However, he said only half of the 164 stalls will be operating.

“There are 164 stalls that operated nightly. In order to keep to the social distancing requirement as underlined in the SOP, only half the number will be allowed to reopen, ” said Ting.

He said the council would ensure a mix of stalls operate nightly.

Balloting was carried out to decide on operating days for the stall operators.

Ting said the council would only allow customers to patronise the night market for 30 minutes to avoid crowding.

Some night market goers said the time given was very short.

A shipping executive, Albert Tay, said 30 minutes was not enough.

“It would be like when I went to a shop that allowed customers 20 minutes only. By the time I had my temperature scanned and particulars noted down, I had very little time left to buy what I needed, ” he said.

“At a night market, we need at least 45 minutes as we want to walk about and look for items to buy.

“With just 30 minutes, I do not think I will go as yet, ” said Tay.

Lawyer David Ting said if there were time constraints, enforcement must be carried out to ensure no one overstayed.

“Some shoppers may take longer and they must be told to leave when their 30 minutes was over, ” he said, adding that he considered the time given sufficient.

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