THE standard operating procedure (SOP) compliance at the Ramadan bazaar along Lorong Tuanku Abdul Rahman (TAR) and Jalan Bunus 6, Kuala Lumpur was low, but visitors and traders still find it acceptable despite the Covid-19 cases soaring over 4,000 on Friday (May 7).
StarMetro visited the bazaar around 5pm today and found that some food traders and visitors still did not comply with the SOP set by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and National Security Council (NSC).
Visitors were not given queue numbers to avoid overcrowding at the entrance.
Pens or pencils were not prepared for visitors who do not have a smartphone to scan the MySejahtera QR code, to jot down their details at the entrance.
Some traders and visitors were found not wearing their masks properly while a few wore their masks beneath their chins.
There were not many people visiting the bazaars but it slowly picked up around 6pm.
Bank executive Mohd Iduan Fauzi, 36, who lived in Plaza City One, said he felt safe shopping at the bazaar.
"Most of the people here follow the SOP and I am fine with shopping at the bazaar.
"But, I hope the Ramadan bazaar can be extended bigger with longer hours," he said.
Snack trader Umie Maizurah, 18, said there are very few people which makes it easier for visitors to get their food and leave.
"I see that a lot of visitors follow SOP while visiting and there isn't much crowd during the weekdays.
"Maybe the people are still scared because of the high daily Covid-19 cases, so they avoid the bazaars," she said.
Meanwhile, the Aidilfitri Bazaar along Lorong TAR fared better in terms of SOP compliance.
There are DBKL officers at the entrance to hand out numbered tags to visitors to manage the crowd.
Police officers were also sighted at the site to monitor the SOP compliance.
Video editor Nor Aisyah Rosli, 24, lauded the government’s efforts to limit the operational hours of the bazaar to tackle Covid-19 cases.
"This is to reduce the Covid-19 cases in the city and I see that most customers also adhere to the SOP at the bazaars.
"I made an effort to visit the bazaar after work as it is less crowded," she said.
Previously, Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa had limited Ramadan bazaars to operate from 3pm to 8pm while Aidilfitri bazaars are to operate from 10am to 10pm starting today.
Ramadan bazaar traders mainly sell foods while Aidilfitri bazaar traders sell apparel and accessories as well as other Hari Raya-themed goods.
On the new operational hours, Aidilfitri bazaar traders hoped that it can be extended as visitors usually come after breaking fast.
Jeans trader Muhammad Anwar Mahat, 33, said visitors will increase around 8.30pm.
"We will only have one hour to do business as DBKL would close off the entrance at 9.30pm.
"Now, we are banking on the weekends and public holidays to make a profit," he said.
Baju Raya trader Nadia Tajie, 27, said the operational hours made it difficult to earn a living.
"We hope the time can be extended to midnight because visitors tend to come later at night.
"There are fewer people in the daytime during weekdays as most of them are working," she said.