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Organisers of events attended by Muhyiddin, Najib in Melaka fined RM24,000 for breaking COVID-19 rules

Organisers of events attended by Muhyiddin, Najib in Melaka fined RM24,000 for breaking COVID-19 rules

File photos of Muhyiddin Yassin and Najib Razak (Photo: Bernama)

KUALA LUMPUR: Organisers of two events attended by former prime ministers Muhyiddin Yassin and Najib Razak in Melaka were fined RM 24,000 (US$5,790) in total for violating COVID-19 health measures, said the Health Ministry.

Melaka Perikatan Nasional (PN) was issued a RM20,000 compound notice for failing to practise social distancing in a walkabout attended by PN chairman Muhyiddin Yassin.

Mr Muhyiddin is also president of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), a partner in Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s government, who is from United Malays National Organisation (UMNO).

Another individual who organised an event attended by Najib was issued a RM4,000 compound notice for the same violation of the COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) during the latter’s recent visit to Melaka.

Najib, who stepped down as prime minister in 2018, is also a former UMNO president.

According to the Health Ministry, neither Mr Muhyiddin nor Najib breached the prohibition against political gatherings during their visit to Melaka ahead of the state election.

In its statement posted in Facebook on Tuesday (Nov 2), the Health Ministry noted that the issue regarding SOP violations in the said Melaka events had gone viral on social media.

“Investigations by the Melaka Health Department found that no activity in the form of social gatherings related to the Melaka state election took place during their entire visit, which was more in the form of a walkabout,” said the statement.

“However, based on observations and investigations by officers empowered under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Disease Act 1988, a compound of RM20,000 has been issued to Melaka Perikatan Nasional for organising the event involving Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin's presence,” it said.

“Another compound of RM4,000 was issued to the individual who organised the event that had Datuk Seri Najib Razak present.

“Both the compounds were for the failure of organisers to ensure safe physical distancing by the crowd that had gathered,” added the ministry.

Malaysian media reported that video clips of Mr Muhyiddin and Najib visiting several constituencies in Melaka went viral on social media, ahead of the official election campaign.

Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin had announced a ban on any activities, gatherings and social events related to the Melaka election between Oct 25 and Nov 27.

The Election Commission has set Nov 8 as the nomination day for the Melaka state election and Nov 20 for polling.

“NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW”: PM ISMAIL SABRI

On Monday, Mr Ismail Sabri, the prime minister, said that no political party or person is above the law and everyone must comply with the SOPs.

“We won’t compromise. There’s no difference between commoners and VVIPs, both will have to face the compound. No one is above the law, so I hope everyone will comply with the SOPs,”  said Mr Ismail Sabri at a press conference, as reported by Bernama.

He said this after launching the National Vaccine Development Roadmap and Malaysian Genome and Vaccine Institute in Bangi, Selangor.

Mr Ismail Sabri was responding to media reports on the RM10,000 compound issued to several political parties for defying the SOPs.

Barisan Nasional was issued the compound for launching its Melaka election machinery in Kuala Lumpur on Oct 27. Parti Keadilan Rakyat, meanwhile, was fined for holding a political talk in Melaka on Oct 30.

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Source: AGENCIES/ih(tx)

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