Holy smoke! Some still at it despite signs at eateries

  • Nation
  • Monday, 23 Dec 2019

Defiant: There are still those who are smoking in restaurants despite being told they can’t light up.

JOHOR BARU: Restaurant owners are asking for a compelling awareness programme regarding the smoking ban come Jan 1,2020, as a majority of the public refuse to comply or even adapt to the imminent changes.

Although preparations, such as placing No Smoking signs around their premises have been undertaken by restaurant owners, there are still those who pay no attention to those signs.

According to restaurant owner Mohamad Syed Kadir Sulthan Syed Ibrahim, some customers even threaten to sue restaurant workers who advise them not to smoke within the premises.

“It is hard advising people because they will not listen unless you have the authority, but at the same time, if you are caught by the authority, it is not just them (customers) who will be facing compound, but owners as well.

“What is lacking is the government’s approach in giving awareness to the public.

“The campaign has been going on for a year but there are still people out there who will not listen, and that is saying something, ” he said when met at his restaurant at Bandar Seri Alam here yesterday.

He added that he recently bought more stickers and banners to be put up before Jan 1,2020, as his own way of dissuading people from smoking at the premises.

“The stickers are already placed at all corners of the premises. There are those who listen but it’s the ones who put up a fight that really leaves us stumped, ” he added.

Another restaurant owner, Mohd Radzi Ab Wahab, said he had prepared a few banners to be placed by the end of December, with the hope that customers would heed the government call.

“We have also conducted an awareness campaign through our restaurant social media platform to better engage with our customers.

“The campaign has been ongoing and will continue until the ban starts.

“So far we have not felt any burden or come across non-compliant customers and personally, I think that it is much better if we embrace a smoking-free healthy lifestyle, ” he said.

Mohd Radzi added that smokers should not only stop smoking at restaurants but at their homes as well.

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