Govt to come down hard on smokers in eateries from Jan 1

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  • Saturday, 22 Jun 2019

IPOH (Bernama): Beginning Jan 1 next year, the government will not hesitate to fine individuals found smoking in public eateries.

Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye stressed that since the educational enforcement period on the smoking ban at food premises was extended to December, smokers should use the time to counsel themselves.

"Use this time to reduce or quit smoking completely. 

"If you fail to do so, have the courtesy not to smoke in public places.

"I promise that from Jan 1, 2020, we will issue summonses to those who fail to comply with this ruling,” he told reporters after officiating at the "Syawal Carnival" in Sekolah Agama Rakyat At-Tolibiah, Kampung Changkat Larang, Lahad, near here Saturday (June 22).

Dr Lee, who is also Gopeng MP, said after the government announced another six-month grace period before the smoking ban was enforced, smokers began lighting up again in public eateries.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad announced on April 25 that the education enforcement period for the smoking ban would be extended until the end of the year to give more time for smokers to increase their awareness on the dangers of smoking.

Initially, the six-month grace period was supposed to end in July after eateries nationwide were gazetted as "no-smoking" zones in January.

Acknowledging that educating the public to reduce or quit smoking was not an easy thing to do, Dr Lee said smokers should take into consideration the rights of non-smokers. – Bernama

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