Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye said the penalty will apply only to smokers who still break the rule despite being given repeated verbal warnings.
"First-time offenders will be issued a fine by Health Officers in the district and must be paid within two weeks. If they fail to pay within the time given or if they repeat the same offence, they can be fined up to RM10,000 or jailed for not more than two years,” he told reporters during a working visit at Hospital Sultanah Hajjah Kalsom, here, today.
On Nov 6 last year, Lee said the ministry will start with the verbal warning approach towards offenders of the no-smoking rule during the first six months of the smoking ban at all food premises starting Jan 1 this year.
Meanwhile, Lee regretted the incident where a waiter was slapped for reminding a group of smokers against smoking at a restaurant in Shah Alam on Tuesday.
According to Lee, the government’s move to widen the non-smoking areas is aimed at protecting the public from cigarette smoke pollution and spur smokers to embrace a healthier lifestyle.
In another development, Lee said the pipe water processed via the water treatment plants in Cameron Highlands is safe and fulfils the standard set, as it is regularly checked by the Health Ministry’s engineering services department.