Key Issues

COVID: Public, business operators urged not to view prison staff negatively

The state government is urging the public, especially business operators, not to view prison staff negatively as this could cause uneasiness to these frontliners in curbing the spread of COVID-19.

Perak Menteri Besar, Datuk Saarani Mohamad said he had received information on several business premises in Taiping placing written notices prohibiting staff of Taiping Prison and Kamunting Detention Centre to enter their premises or areas.

“The prison staff and other frontline workers are not in the wrong, so a misperception of them will give the a wrong picture. Those infected with COVID-19 are the prisoners, while the prison staff on duty who are out have undergone quarantine.

“There’s a tendency for the public to be afraid but it should not be to the extent of giving a wrong perception of these frontliners and embarrassing them while they need to go to the shops and supermarkets to buy necessities,” he said when met by reporters after visiting the roadblock at the Changkat Jering Toll Plaza, here, today.

Saarani urged all parties to respect and appreciate the frontliners including the police and People’s Volunteer Corps who toiled in ensuring public adherence to the Movement Control Order (MCO) towards breaking the COVID-19 chain.

On a related development, he said the Low Risk COVID-19 Treatment and Quarantine Centres (PKRC) in the state located at the Perak Badminton Arena, Ipoh and in Ulu Kinta could still admit patients as some of those under quarantine would be discharged in 10 days.

“There had been a proposal to set up a PKRC in Taiping but at this stage, it would be established outside Perak in the north while those in south Perak will be sent to the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang (MAEPS), Selangor,” he said.

Asked on appeals by pasar malam traders to be allowed to operate during the MCO period, Saarani said they could submit their applications to be sent to the National Security Council (MKN).

“There have been many such requests but we cannot easily approve as the standard operating procedure (SOP) has to be strictly followed by the traders and visitors of the pasar malam, pasar tani and similar open markets,” he added.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency

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