MOST of the visitors at Taman Botani Perdana in Kuala Lumpur yesterday were adults going for a walk or jog, or cycling.
According to a maintenance worker, the park that is popular for family recreation and leisure activities has seen a drastic drop in visitors since its reopening on Saturday, after the closure at the start of the movement control order on Jan 13.
During a check by StarMetro at the park, there was the MySejahtera QR code in place for park-goers to scan before entering.
There were no physical barriers, except at the gazebos to prevent people from sitting inside, or visible signage notifying users of the standard operating procedure.
No one was spotted using the playground facilities and most of the visitors came alone or in pairs to exercise.
There were a few young couples with babies in strollers, toddlers and young children in tow but everyone remained close to their own groups.
Similar scenes were observed at other parks under Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), such as Taman Tasik Titiwangsa and Taman Metropolitan Kepong, which were all allowed to reopen on Saturday.
Mat Yusoff Mat Yacob, 70 and his wife Zaimah Ahmad, 44, from Bangsar, were relieved that the parks were open to the public.
Mat Yusoff said it was boring to sit at home all day as there was nothing much to do.
“Age is catching up and we need to take care of our health by exercising. The area where I live is not conducive for walking or jogging.
“I am glad Taman Botani Perdana is open to the public despite the MCO, ” he said.
Elderly couple Pang How Yong, 72, and his wife Hean Sen Yen, 71, from Taman Seputeh were also at the park.
Pang said they would usually go for walks at parks at least five times a week.
“My wife and I have always been physically active and asking us to stay at home makes us frustrated and feel lethargic.
“The people at the park were cautious and were distancing themselves from one another.
“I think allowing parks to open is not a big risk. People just have to take care of themselves, ” he said.
Finance director Roshidah Abu Bakar, 51, said parks must remain open for people like her who have no other place to jog or exercise.
“The lack of exercise during MCO last year caused me to put on weight. I live in an apartment in the city and residents were not allowed to even jog at the carpark.”
“I am determined to lose weight and have to continue exercising.
“I hope that the parks remain open and the authorities find a way to ensure the public follow the SOP strictly, ” she added.
Accountant Lyu Jing Yi, 27, who is a Chinese national, said people generally adhered to the SOP at the park, but there were parts along the jogging track that were too narrow for two people to keep a safe distance from one another.
“The tarmac road has ample space but the track along the perimeter of the lake is not very wide.
“I could see the concern on people’s faces as they got closer to me.
“It is good to know that the people have the awareness to be vigilant.
“Anyway, most people just cross paths and do not walk or jog side by side, ” she added.
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