No more counselling for those who smoke at eateries after June 30


PUTRAJAYA (April 11): With the grace period on educating smokers not to smoke at eateries ending on June 30, Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye urged smokers to control their habit or kick it altogether.

“If they want to stop smoking, services on this are available at 731 clinics and 46 hospitals of the Ministry for free,” he told reporters after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding on the “Healthy Communities are Nation Builders Plus Programme” between the Health Ministry and Bintulu Port Holdings Bhd here today.

He said that from July, action would be taken against those caught smoking at eateries.

The prohibition on smoking at eateries came into force on  Jan 1. Smokers must be at least three metres (10 feet)  away (from eateries) before they can light up.

The Health Ministry has given a grace period of six months to counsel offenders. However, from July, offenders can be fined not exceeding RM10,000 or jailed not more than two years.

On regulations governing electronic cigarettes and vaping, Lee said if nicotine was involved, the Poisons Act 1952 and Sale of Drugs Act 1952 came into play while if there was no nicotine, sellers could continue  to sell their products even though the Ministry discouraged this.

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