Cardiologist who defied authorities to go jogging charged with breaching MCO

Consultant Cardiologist Dr Ong Hean Teik is pictured arriving at the George Town Court Complex March 30, 2020. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
Consultant Cardiologist Dr Ong Hean Teik is pictured arriving at the George Town Court Complex March 30, 2020. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

GEORGE TOWN, March 30 - A cardiologist who challenged authorities trying to enforce the movement control order and continued jogging was charged over two related offences today.

Prosecutors charged Dr Ong Hean Teik, 61, with going to the Taman Bandaraya along Jalan Persiaran Quarry at 4.45pm on March 19 without valid reason as required under Rule 3(1) Prevention of Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures within the infected local areas) Regulations 2020.

This section provides for a fine of up to RM1,000 or a jail term of not more than six months or both upon conviction.

He was also charged with obstructing a public servant from discharging his duty at the same place at about 6pm on the same day, under Section 186 of the Penal Code.

The second offence is punishable by up to two years’ imprisonment, a maximum fine of RM10,000, or both upon conviction.

Ong, who was represented by Bala Mahesan, claimed trial to both charges.

Magistrate Jameliah Abdul Manaf allowed bail at RM13,000 for both charges and ordered Ong to surrender his passport.

She also ordered him to report to the police station once a month and set mention date of the case on June 9.

On March 19, Penang Island City Council (MBPP) enforcement officers spotted Ong jogging at Taman Bandaraya and advised him to go home to observe the MCO implemented the day before.

The doctor defied them while insisting he was entitled to be at the recreational park to exercise for health reasons.

A video of the disagreement was shared on social media while the MBPP lodged a police report against Ong after the incident.

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