PAS’ Terengganu exco member says will pay fine over MCO SOP breach after neighbour visits house on Raya day one

PAS assemblyman Azman Ibrahim had stepped forward to have his statement recorded by the police. — Picture via Facebook/ybdrazmanibrahim
PAS assemblyman Azman Ibrahim had stepped forward to have his statement recorded by the police. — Picture via Facebook/ybdrazmanibrahim

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 14 — Terengganu executive council member Azman Ibrahim today confirmed that the police have offered to let him compound his offence of breaching the Movement Control Order’s (MCO) standard operating procedures by paying a fine instead of facing prosecution.

Alluding to an incident where his neighbour visited him yesterday on the first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Azman who is also PAS’s Jabi assemblyman in Terengganu in a Facebook post today indicated the fine would be paid as soon as possible.

In the same Facebook post, Azman said that he provided his statement to a police officer at the Besut district police headquarters’ criminal investigation department, and that he received a letter of offer to compound the offence.

He did not disclose the amount of the fine that he was being offered to compound his offence, but indicated that even elected lawmakers have to comply with the laws.

“YB are also punished as per the ordinary citizens with the same rate of offer to compound. God-willing it will be settled as quickly as possible. No one is above the law,” the chairman of the Terengganu state government’s Agriculture, Food Industries, Plantations, Commodities and Rural Development Committee said in the Facebook post.

In a separate and earlier Facebook post today which is also the second day of Hari Raya, Azman announced that he had contacted the Setiu district police chief to provide his statement regarding the “presence of a neighbour who visited the house on the morning of the first day of Raya yesterday”.

“I humbly request that this case be processed according to the MCO SOP procedures that are in force without any exception,” he said in that post, before apologising to all who were affected due to this issue.

In yet another Facebook post yesterday, Azman said that he had not held any open house event at his house, but said there were only “one or two” citizens who had came to his house as was the norm on other days when citizens come to his house over various matters.

Azman described his dilemma as a “kuli” or labourer for the public, saying: “It is not reasonable for us to close the door and lock it, and then tell citizens to go home as Raya visits are not allowed, when the citizens always come to the house on other days during the MCO period. It’s also not reasonable for us not to bring even a glass of water when citizens nearby come to our house. This Raya season, there is also one or two pieces of ketupat although not a full table of food.”

“It would be different if YB holds a big open house event with the attendance of many guests. It’s up to everyone to interpret,” he had said.

Under the nationwide MCO from May 12 to June 7 which was announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on May 10, the latest MCO SOPs state that home-to-home visits and graveyard visits by Muslims during the Hari Raya Aidilfitri are not allowed.

Open house events are also not allowed during the Hari Raya celebrations this year as a precautionary measure to prevent Covid-19 infections from spreading.

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