KUALA LUMPUR: Former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad on Thursday (Feb 22) said that Barisan Nasional's (BN) plan to "reintroduce plastic bags" in shops in Selangor is "bad for the future" because of the amount of rubbish it will generate.
In a Facebook video that was posted on Thursday night, he added that his party, Pakatan Harapan, encourages reusable bags.
Drawing comparisons between both parties, Dr Mahathir said: "Barisan Nasional is for the past, dirtying the environment with plastic, but Pakatan Harapan is for the future, where bags like this (reusable bags) will be reused again and again."
Selangor's BN chairman Noh Omar had said last Sunday that the party would consider scrapping the state government's "No to plastic bags and polystyrene" campaign, where retailers charge consumers RM0.20 (US$0.05) for plastic bags.
Noh branded the campaign a "failure" as the move has not resulted in a drastic change in consumer's attitudes since it was implemented on Jan 1 last year. Instead, he said BN will consider introducing a policy where retailers pay RM0.20 to consumers who carry their own recycled bags to shop, if it wins the Pakatan Harapan-led state in the upcoming general election.
Selangor is not the only Malaysian state that has the no-plastic-bag rule. Other states like Melaka and Johor Baru have also implemented this policy.