‘Rule breakers will be turned away’


Spot check: Dr Wee arriving at the Bukit Bintang MRT station during his inspection of the public transportation during the fourth phase of the movement control order. — AZMAN GHANI/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Public transport services will be denied to those who refuse to take the required steps to cut the risk of spreading Covid-19, says Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.

Stressing that safety was paramount, Dr Wee said the procedures were put in place to protect everyone.

“We can’t arrest them, but we have the right to refuse them. We are hoping for the public to understand that this is to protect our health, ” he said.

The procedures to minimise the risk of passing on or contracting Covid-19 are compulsory temperature checks for every passenger, wearing face masks, social distancing within transport terminals, trains or buses, and daily sanitisation of trains and buses.

“If passengers do not pass the temperature check, they will not be allowed to board.

“After the temperature check, they have to use the hand sanitiser we provide, ” he told reporters after visiting the Bukit Bintang MRT station here yesterday.

Dr Wee was present with Prasarana Malaysia Bhd acting chief executive officer Muhammad Nizam Alias.

He inspected the MRT station after boarding a train from the Taman Mutiara station as part of his observation on the first day of the conditional movement control order.

On complimentary face masks, he said passengers may request for face masks from their respective public transport operators, but stressed that free masks would only be distributed for about two days, beginning yesterday.

“Malaysians were given face masks, so I think there should not be a reason for them not to have them.

“If they really don’t have, it can be given for free in the first two days as a form of education. If it’s distributed every day, it’ll be high cost for us.

“Bring face masks if you can. We are not particular about the quality. Our only request is that you wear one, ” Dr Wee said, adding that auxiliary police officers and staff members across all public transportation facilities had been ordered by the Transport Ministry to ensure full compliance of standard operating procedure (SOP).

“This is for our own good. We have also ordered all of our public transport operators to conduct the sanitation exercise on a daily basis, ” he said, adding that passengers should remind each other about the need to observe SOP.

Based on his observation, there are not many commuters on the MRT, while traffic remains light.

“It’s highly likely that many companies are still planning and observing. We are asking them to return to work in phases, ” he said.

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