Penang business, service premises resume operations

GEORGE TOWN (May 8): The imposition of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) in Penang began today with many business and service premises resuming operations.

Bernama found many people going into the town areas in the state like Butterworth, Bukit Mertajam and George Town, and queues were seen outside places like post offices, banks and car repair workshops.

According to Mohamed Idrus Karim, 52, he had gone to the post office in Komtar at 8am to renew his driving licence and to pay outstanding bills, and found there were already many others there before him.

He said his driving licence expired last month, but he could not renew it before today because the Movement Control Order (MCO) was imposed on March 18.

“I came here at 8am and there were already people lining up while observing social distancing, and wearing masks. I spoke to a few who said they were also renewing their driving licence and road tax,” he told Bernama here today.

Another visitor to Komtar, Suhaila Abdullah, 35, said the CMCO in Penang has allowed her to shop for clothes and biscuits for the coming Aidilfitri.

She said she did not leave the house during the MCO and was taking this chance to shop even though this year’s Aidilfitri will not be as festive as before.

“I just want to get clothes for my three children and some biscuits as we are not going back to Perak for Aidilfitri. Many people seem to be out today too,” she said.

Meanwhile, Nur Hazani Mohd Noor Halim, 48, said she opened her shop at 10am to sell her clothes after not operating for one month due to the MCO.

"Alhamdulillah, the CMCO will help us recover from the losses we incurred from the one month we did not operate. Thank you to the government for allowing us to resume trading,” she said, adding that all the traders must observe the standard operating procedure set by the government such as social distancing, providing hand sanitiser, and screening body temperatures, and limiting customers to about 15 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, Penang Police Chief Datuk Sahabudin Abd Wahab told Bernama the CMCO in Penang was going smoothly even though the number of vehicles on the roads had increased as many people returned to work.

He said police will monitor public compliance of the CMCO, especially in shopping centres, to prevent people from gathering and practised social distancing.

He said police personnel will be stationed in the shopping centres, tourist spots and banks to monitor the situation and advise people who do not comply with the CMCO.

He added that there were 11 roadblocks in the state which were focused on boundary areas to ensure that people do not travel across states without reason.

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