SOP, the abbreviation for “standard operating procedure”, must be the most commonly used, emphasised and reminded about term in media and conversation in the last three months. The Covic-19 pandemic has undoubtedly created and greatly increased our awareness of the need to adhere to SOPs handed down by the Health Ministry to minimise infections.
The SOPs are proving to be effective and the results achieved are common knowledge and appreciated. Adherence to the ministry’s SOPs through consistent, stringent enforcement has done Malaysia proud with outstanding results that have caught the world’s attention.
By now, we should all realise that SOPs that are well-researched and written plus well applied and enforced can and will bring us the desired positive results.
During this movement control order period, I have been cycling on public roads in Petaling Jaya for exercise. As I rode around, it came to me that our maintenance of and repairs to public roads could be more satisfactorily done if SOPs like the ones for the Covid-19 pandemic are followed and enforced.
As I cycled my 30km routes,
I have sadly seen (and experienced!) the following:
> Uneven surfaces after patching;
> Roads dug up for utilities not well resurfaced;
> Potholes filled with water (a breeding ground for mosquitoes);
> Manhole covers not levelled properly with the road surface.
I believe the Health Ministry’s SOPs are a good yardstick that shows if public road maintenance SOPs are well followed and properly implemented and enforced, similar satisfactory end results can be achieved. This will improve and enhance road safety and it would be money well spent.
Similarly, if all other SOPs in other sectors follow the same path taken for the health SOPs, there will be better end results all round.
This is an opportune time to implement, use and enforce SOPs as guidelines towards better public services. After seeing them at work during this crisis, I’m sure the public can and will accept them in reciprocal action for the general good, benefit and betterment of our society and environment.
TOH CHEE TIONG
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