KUALA LUMPUR, March 17 — Individuals and companies who have been compounded under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 (Act 342) are eligible for a 50 per cent discount if they settle the fine within seven days of its issuance.

De facto Law Minister Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan said this was decided by the Cabinet following a proposal tabled by the Health Ministry earlier today.

Takiyuddin also said the government has fixed the fine amount for first-time offenders at RM1,500 for standard offences committed on the wearing of face-masks and MySejahtera registrations.

“If one is issued a compound, should they pay the fine within seven days, automatically they are eligible for a 50 per cent discount, that is RM750.

“If they pay within two weeks that is between the eighth day and 14th day, they are eligible for a 25 per cent discount.

“However if they refuse to pay following the lapse of the 14-day grace period, then there will not be any reduction in the fine,” he told a press conference here.

Provisions within the Emergency (Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 state that a person found breaching movement control order SOPs is subject to a fine compoundable up to a sum of RM10,000, a tenfold increase from the previous maximum compound value of RM1,000.

Takiyuddin said the discount would also apply to those issued compound notices for the maximum RM10,000 for individuals and RM50,000 for companies on offences committed.

Earlier, Takiyuddin announced the Cabinet’s decision to stipulate the nature of offences according to their severity with varying compounding rates into three categories.

The severity of offences are now listed according to the First Category (offences resulting in high infection risks and significant impact to the community on a large-scale), Second Category (offences resulting in high infection risks but less significant impact to the community) and Third Category (offences resulting in low infection risks and zero impact to the community).

He also said those who have been fined but unable to pay them while suffering from pre-existing conditions such as disabilities or poor financial health are eligible to appeal their fines with the Health Ministry through various channels available.

“We give consideration to those with problems for example, the disabled or the poor, beggars and so on. They can’t afford it but have committed an offence.

“Based on the law, they are given a compound like I mentioned earlier. If they are unable to pay, they, or a certain company, can submit an appeal to the Health Ministry through the right channel,” he said.

However he said offenders must provide the relevant documents to prove their status to qualify for further appeal.

According to Takiyuddin, a monitoring team with identifiable special armbands comprising local enforcement and government authorities will be formed to monitor the enforcement of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) beginning April 1.

“In the fight against the pandemic, all these rules and SOPs are necessary to contain the spread of Covid-19.

“The Health Ministry and the police have also instructed their respective officers to only issue fines as a last resort,” he said.

For appeals, Takiyuddin said those authorised to revise and approve them included the respective state health director, state deputy health director (public health), district health officer and medical officers of epidemiology.