All quiet on Kuching city streets as residents heed 7pm-7am curfew
0 month ago, 24-Mar-2020
A motorcyclist shows a policeman the letter from his employer which permits him to travel and work during the 7pm-7am curfew at an MCO road at Jalan Pending. Photo by Roystein Emmor
KUCHING: The city streets were relatively empty on the first night of the state-implemented 7pm to 7am curfew, as only those returning home from work were seen travelling on the roads here.
Those who were on their way to or back from work had permission letters from their employers and the authorities ready to be shown to police manning the Movement Control Order (MCO) roads here.
No untoward incidents occurred throughout the survey by The Borneo Post at several of the roads in the city on the first few hours of the first night of the curfew.
Officer in charge of the Jalan Sekama MCO road Sergeant Julaihi said for the first hour of the 7pm-7am limitation, they stopped about 20 vehicles.
All of them are on their way home from work so we let them go, he said when met by reporters here.
He said the instructions from higher ups was that only services transporting food and essential items as well as members of the media and employees with permission letters from their employers were allowed to operate beyond curfew hours.
Others we have stopped, we have to question them and remind them of the restrictions implemented by the Sarawak government which begins today.
Many of them know about the curfew but finished work late, said Julaihi.
There were four policemen and eight armed forces personnel manning the Jalan Sekama MCO in front of MBKS headquarters.
Meanwhile, Sarawak police commissioner Datuk Aidi Ismail earlier today warned that anyone defying the curfew from 7pm to 7am under the MCO would be arrested.
He said under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Disease Act 1988 under Section 24, offenders can be jailed no more than two years or fined, or both.
Aidi said offenders can also be charged under Section 186 of the Penal Code for obstructing any public servants in the discharge of their public functions.
He said this offence shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with a fine which may extend to RM10,000, or both.
Starting from this evening, all shops and services are closed at 7pm and only those with work permit documents are allowed (to travel).
Apart from that, if anyone goes out without any cause, they will be detained, he said.
Aidi also said in the statement that a total of 139 roads have been set up throughout the state to enforce the MCO, adding that the number is expected to increase if the situation calls for it.
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