No to reunion dinner, yes to night market?

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reunion dinner pasar malam night market (Picture for representational purposes only) The Chinese New Year decoration at a mall in Kuala Lumpur. PIX: AFIQ HAMBALI / MalaysiaGazette / 19 JANUARY 2021.
(Picture for representational purposes only) The Chinese New Year decoration at a mall in Kuala Lumpur. PIX: AFIQ HAMBALI / MalaysiaGazette / 19 JANUARY 2021.

By Muhammad Azizul Osman

KUALA LUMPUR – Majority of the people, especially the Chinese community in the country are confused by the Chinese New Year (CNY) standard operating procedures (SOP) announced by the government yesterday.

The confusion arises from the reunion dinner, a practice for CNY eve, where it can only involve individuals from the same household.

To add on to the confusion, the government also announced that the reunion dinner and visitation will only be allowed for the family members living under the same roof, as announced by Senior Minister (Security Cluster), Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

The Deputy Minister of National Unity, Senator Datuk Seri Ti Lian Ker was also mystified and said that the SOP needs to be retracted and amended.

Most of the netizens questioned the government’s decision as the night market, hair salons and carwash centres have been allowed to operate beginning today.

Nana Jeoffery said, if the three business sectors are allowed to operate during the Movement Control Order (MCO), then, all other business sectors should also be allowed to operate.

“If you want to lockdown, lockdown properly. What is this? Salons can open, night market can open. Then, you don’t need to declare a lockdown.

“Just open everything to be fair. The cases reduced in last year’s lockdown. This round, it is merely named lockdown but we are free,” she Twitted.

On the other hand, Farid Maulud said that the CNY SOP issued by the government is confusing.

According to him, the protocols for house visits during the CNY within the MCO period did not reflect on the actual SOP.

“Visit mother in the kitchen, visit children in their room. But, the night market can open,” Farid said on Twitter, referring to the term ‘visitation activities is only allowed between family members living in the same house only’.

Many sarcastic comments on the CNY also emerged, saying that although they cannot visit each other, they can still meet at their nearest night market.

This another funny SOP for CNY. OK, those close relatives that can’t come to my house during CNY to wish me and get Ang Pau. Please make advance notice. We can meet at the nearest pasar malam. This is allow ..leh,” said Rickee Lee.

According to Ismail Sabri, the three economic sectors, namely, the night market, hair salons and carwash centres are allowed to operate under strict SOP. –MalaysiaGazette

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Night market, hair salons, carwash allowed to operate tomorrow

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