Vape, shisha not included in smoking ban, says Dzulkefly

Pic for story on vape. AZMAN GHANI / The Star

PUTRAJAYA (Bernama): The ban on smoking at all restaurants, food outlets and hawker stalls which will take effect from Jan 1 next year does not include puffing on vaporised liquid nicotine (vape) and shisha, according to Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad.

However, he said the ministry was still in discussion to include vape and shisha in the regulation.

"As for the time being, the ban will only involve tobacco products, but for vape and shisha, we will take regulatory and legal approaches but in other legislative categories," he said at the Award and Recognition of the Blue Ribbon Campaign 2018 here on Friday (Nov 16) night.

The Blue Ribbon campaign was held since 2013 to protect the public from the dangers of cigarette smoke through advocacy efforts to create 100 percent non-smoking areas.

Starting Jan 1, 2019, the smoking ban will be enforced at all covered, air-conditioned restaurants, or open-concept restaurants and stalls.

Anyone caught breaching the ban will face a fine of RM10,000 with eateries that fail to enforce the law to be slapped with a fine of RM2,500.

In another development, Dr Dzulkefly said the practice of infant female circumcision by Muslims in Malaysia differed from the female genital mutilation (FGM) being practised in other countries.

He said this in response to the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia's (Suhakam) statement slamming Putrajaya for making misleading statement concerning the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) on human rights in Geneva, Switzerland when its delegates reportedly defended the practice of FGM as a "cultural obligation" in Malaysia.

"Infant female circumcision differs from FGM and we have to be very careful in discussing this issue as it involves various aspects, including that of social and culture," he added. - Bernama


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