KUCHING: Datuk Seri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah (pic) emphasised that he did not propose completely lifting the face masks mandate in the country.
The Minister of Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts claimed that he was only suggesting that the mandate to be relaxed.
“As I previously stated, the Ministry of Health and Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) should not make wearing face masks mandatory.
“I’m not sure if Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii can understand simple English.
“I’m not suggesting that we should take off our face masks completely.
“What I meant is that the public should have the option to choose, or that standard operating procedures (SOPs) should be less rigorous,” he told reporters on Thursday.
He was reacting to a comment made by Dr Yii, who stated that any choice to relax the COVID-19 SOPs must be based on data and science.
Elaborating further, Abdul Karim said while the SOPs have been loosened, the law remains in effect and that errant members of the public who violate the SOPs would be punished.
“Members of the public must remember that COVID-19 is still out there, and they must be careful.
“Give them a choice, that’s how I view it,” he pointed out.