Traders forced to adapt after sudden bazaar closure

No business for now: Trader Ahmad Koosim tidying up his stall at the Tok Adis Ramadan Bazaar near Kuala Ibai following its 14-day closure. — Bernama

KUALA TERENGGANU: The temporary closure of the Tok Adis Ramadan Bazaar near Kuala Ibai here for failing to comply with the standard operating procedure has forced traders to find an alternative source of income.

Trader Muhammad Syahmi Badli Ramli, who sells drinks at the bazaar, said he was shocked by the closure and planned to sell nasi lemak by the roadside at night as an alternative.

“I am disappointed because this is my first time doing business at a bazaar and I spent RM3,000 on preparations.

“I also hired five workers to help me at the bazaar during the fasting month. If I don’t do business, they will lose their source of income. I will find a new site and sell nasi lemak, ” the 30-year-old said.

Syahmi hoped that the temporary closure would serve as a lesson for all, including customers, to always abide by the SOP.

“Over the past three days, I noticed that some visitors failed to practise physical distancing while queuing to enter the bazaar.

“Most of the traders have rented two lots to ensure that the stalls are spacious enough for visitors to comply with the rules, ” he said.

Yesterday, the Terengganu Health Department confirmed that the Tok Adis Ramadan Bazaar had been ordered to close for 14 days until April 30 to enable its operator to ensure compliance with the SOP.

Another trader, who wished to be known only as Faridah, said she suffered losses as she had spent RM10,000 on cooking supplies and other equipment for her noodle soup stall.“To get the RM10,000, I had to pawn my jewellery. Usually, it takes 15 business days to break even. But now, it is only four days and my income is less than RM4,000.

“Last year, we were unable to do business due to the movement control order. I was hoping to earn more this Ramadan but I have to abide by the new directive, ” said the 42-year-old. — Bernama

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