GEORGE TOWN, March 26 -- Essential service outlets in Penang have shown full compliance with the new business hour regulations in the state which took effect on Wednesday (March 25).
Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow on Tuesday announced that all businesses in Penang can only operate between 6 am and 8 pm beginning the following day, an additional step to enforce the Movement Control Order (MCO) to curtail the spread of COVID-19.
A Bernama look at a hypermarket in Tanjung Tokong around 7.30 pm on Wednesday found that most stores inside the facility closed their outlets early, including pharmacies and fast food restaurants.
Nearing 8 pm, the security staff stationed outside the entrance stopped latecomers from entering the hypermarket as it was getting ready to close.
Meanwhile, a visit to several petrol stations around George Town found that all closed by 8 pm.
Most barricaded their entrances and exits, or staff members were seen informing drivers of incoming vehicles that the station had closed for the day, in accordance with the new operating hours.
Meanwhile, in Seberang Perai, many business premises closed as early as 8 p.m.
In fact, barricades and cones were placed in front of these premises to prevent the public from entering.
Checks conducted by the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) from 8 p.m. until 10 p.m. found that about 99 per cent of business premises complied with the MCO.
According to MBPP environmental health officer M. Bawani, of the 3,260 business premises in six parliamentary constituencies (Tanjong, Jelutong, Bukit Bendera, Balik Pulau, Bayan Baru and Bukit Gelugor) which were checked, only 15 did not comply with the MCO.
“We issued the owners of the premises with warnings and waited for them to close shop. We will go back to these premises today to check again.
“If these premises commit the same offence again, we will lodge a police report and rescind their business licences issued by MBPP. Most of the owners said they were not aware (of the new regulations) and assumed that they could go on operating for 24 hours,” Bawani said.
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