As reported by the New StraitsTimes, Minister of International Trade and Industry, Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, mentioned that the federal government is aware that a few states have decided not to follow the implementation of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO), which started on May 4.
“Their actions are not founded on lawful authority and are contrary to the policy of the federal government, all the more so in view of the fact that the federal government’s policy has already been made into law and is enforceable throughout the country,” he stated, as reported in the NST.Photo source: New Straits Times
“Should the state governments refuse to cooperate in implementing Act 342, which has been gazetted into law and enforceable throughout the country, the state governments may face the possibility of legal action from various parties, particularly industry players,” he further disclosed.
This indicates that whichever state government that did not follow the CMCO may be sued. Meanwhile, it was also learned that there are 9 states that were not implementing the CMCO on May 4, they are Sarawak, Kedah, Sabah, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Kelantan, Penang, and Perak.
Responses from State Governments
Senior Executive Councilor of the State Government of Selangor, Dato’ Teng Chang Khim, stated that Selangor is in accordance with the federal government’s implementation of CMCO, including the decision on delaying some economic activities. He mentioned that this does not go against the federal government’s decision, according to Sin Chew Daily.
Meanwhile, Malay Mail reported that Selangor Mentri Besar, Datuk Amirudin Shari, defended his administration today over its decision to only comply partly with the conditional movement control order (MCO), saying the move was within its authority. While emphasizing the need of ‘soft landing’, instead of ‘crash landing’.
Kelantan State government made its announcement today (May 5) to follow the federal government’s decision and will be implementing CMCO starting from tomorrow (May 6). However, the operation hours of businesses are still limited according to local governments, as reported in Sin Chew Daily.
Menteri Besar of Kelantan, Dato’ Bentara Kanan Haji Ahmad bin Yakob too reminded all industries to follow the Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) set by the federal government for this CMCO.
Penang Chief Minister, Chow Kon Yeow, announced today on his Facebook live that Penang has never objected the implementation of CMCO. However, he too wished to inform Senior Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali that both state government and himself are ready to be sued for protecting the 1.8 million Penangites, as reported in The Star. He too disclosed in the report by Sin Chew Daily that state governments did not object nor agree to the CMCO, they simply requested more time of preparation for the resumption of economic activities.
He mentioned earlier in his Facebook live on May 3 that the implementation of CMCO will begin on May 8, instead of May 4.
Sabah Chief Minister, Shafie Apdal, mentioned in Free Malaysia Today that Sabah will not back down on enforcing the initial MCO even though the CMCO allowed most businesses to resume operation. He stated that Sabah was not trying to go against the federal government, rather, it was focused on saving lives.
He indicated that the decision of CMCO was made aware after he heard it from the news, denying that statement that Putrajaya has consulted them about the implementation of CMCO.
“Before the announcement was made, no one got in touch with me. We only knew of the decision when we saw it announced on television,” he expressed.
According to Borneo Post Online, The Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) has said yes to the implementation of CMCO as long as it is suited for the conditions of the state. Its chairperson, Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah disclosed in a press conference that the SDMC is refining the SOPs for businesses to resume operation for all stakeholders to get familiarized with it.
“After they (stakeholders) understand (the SOP), the next approach is operation. Once the operation starts, we have to have sufficient people to do monitoring, supervision, and enforcement. There’s no point in introducing SOP if we cannot enforce,” he explained.
At the time of writing, 5 states have responded to Azmin Ali’s statement.