Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said the state would maintain the plan to resume business activities on May 12 which was initially announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin under the fourth phase of the movement control order (MCO).
“I hope the Federal Government would consult the state governments in their decisions and not inform us via the media,” he said when asked about the announcement that all states must abide by the conditional movement control order (MCO) under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act.
International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Azmin Ali had said that states which did not follow the conditional MCO might risk being hit with legal action by industries impacted by their decision not to reopen yet.
“This is not the time to talk about laws. What we are trying to do is save lives. The economy could recover but when a life is lost, it cannot be recovered,” he said.
Instead of being afraid sued by businesses, he is more afraid of people dying. Shafie also added it was important for the Federal Government to consult the state, which was already working on a time frame set by the Prime Minister.
“We are the ones who are going to implement the decision made by them,” he said, adding that the Federal Government might not be clear on issues on the ground.
He said the state needed time to reopen the economic sector, besides ensuring public safety. Currently, Sabah had already been opening up several sectors including food and plantations, besides providing credit for small businesses during this period.
“We are opening up, in line with the May 12 decision. So we continue to look at the sectors and reopen them in phases,” he added.
Source : The Star