Selangor Exco Slams Miti For Allowing More Businesses During Enhanced Mco


Selangor exco member Ng Sze Han has hit out at the International Trade and Industry Ministry (Miti) for permitting certain economic sectors to resume operations amid the enhanced movement control order (EMCO) in Selangor from July 7.
The new directive from Miti is creating confusion among industry players as local authorities are adhering to the existing standard operating procedures (SOPs), which stipulate only essential businesses and services are allowed for areas placed under full lockdown in Selangor.
The local government, public transport and new village development committee chairperson also hinted that the local enforcement officers on the ground may not recognise the letter issued by Miti if the relevant businesses and services are classified as non-essential businesses or services.
“We found out that many approval letters issued by Miti are in conflict with the EMCO SOPs, which were also issued by the National Security Council (NSC). Miti’s failure to communicate with other ministries has caused massive confusion on the ground,” he told Malaysiakini.
“In fact, what Miti approved are the businesses and services that were listed in the SOP for Phase 1 of the National Recovery Plan (NRP). Most areas in Selangor are still under full lockdown, not Phase 1 of the NRP,” he said.
‘We are not opposing federal govt for the sake of it’
Ng denied that the state government is going against the federal government arbitrarily.
“The federal government is in control and taking the lead in the management of the pandemic, while the state government only executes (the orders). We have no say at all,” he said.
Ng urged relevant factories and businesses to seek clarification with both the NSC and Miti before deciding to resume operation in order to avoid getting into trouble with the authorities.
Ng was asked to respond to the confusion that arose when a few factories were accused of flouting the SOP by local enforcement officers and were instructed to shut down immediately after they were found operating on July 9, two days after Miti seemingly allowed the factories to operate.
In its July 7 statement, Miti approved several businesses - electrical and electronics (E&E) sector and its supply chains, aerospace sector, machinery and equipment (M&E) for the production of healthcare and food and beverage products - to resume operation with immediate effect.
Miti said the decision to reopen these sectors was made in a cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on the same day.
Miti’s latest decision came as Selangor recorded the highest number of new Covid-19 cases for weeks with many cases coming from workplace clusters.
Following Miti’s announcement, Selangor Menteri Besar Amirudin Shari urged the NSC to allow only essential economic sectors to open until the EMCO in the state was lifted.
Malaysiakini has attempted to contact Deputy Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, Miti and NSC for comment since yesterday.
Factories are confused

Meanwhile, MTUC’s Selangor and Federal Territories chairperson Wan Noorulazhar Mohd Hanafiah said some factories in Selangor were struggling to cope with the conflicting instructions from various government entities in the last few days.

He said at least two E&E factories in Petaling and Kuala Langat were confused as they were asked by the local government officials to shut down on the second day after they resumed operations.
“A printer company halted its swab test for 600 workers because the state government barred them from resuming operations during enhanced MCO. But later in the evening, they were told that they can operate after seeking clarification with Miti,” he said.
“In Telok Panglima Garang, the local council raided a factory and it later resumed operation because the operator decided to go by Miti’s approval and not Selangor local council instructions,” he said.
While noting some economic sectors approved by Miti may be deemed essential, particularly those which supply products to hospitals, he however pointed out other sectors, including E & E, are not essential businesses and services.
Wan Noorulazhar, who was tipped off by union members, said some Covid-19 clusters were detected in some of the factories in these sectors.
“The confusion arises as we don't know which instruction we should heed?” he said.
Meanwhile, the Electrical and Electronics Association of Malaysia (Teeam) said it has yet to receive any relevant complaints from its members.
Its president Siew Choon Thye told the affected factories or businesses to seek advice from the NSC and the nearest police station as the police were the ones with the authority to issue a compound fine against SOP flouters.
Siew noted that some industries should be allowed to operate even though they are placed under the EMCO due to strict measures imposed by the government to ensure the factories are free from Covid-19.
“We were asked to conduct a swab test twice a week, which is very costly for those with large manpower, as this will ensure no Covid-19 cases in the factories that resume operation,” he said.
He urged the government to allow the E&E factories in Selangor to operate as they need to meet the global supply chain compliance and its deadline. - Mkini

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