State Minister for Local Government and Housing Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian said it also agreed that the first six months from March 1 would be the educational enforcement period and no compound would be issued then.
“The decision to ban smoking at eating places is for the health of the general public,” he said in a statement.
However, he said, with the approval of the local authorities, licensed operators may designate a smoking spot in an area not less than three metres away from the nearest table where food is served.
“And it shall be the responsibility of the licensee to ensure that such a place is kept clean at all times,” he said.
Yesterday, Sarawak DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen told the Sarawak government to stop misleading the public that the smoking ban imposed by the Ministry of Health in eateries is not applicable in Sarawak because it did not endorse the ban.
The Federal Government has banned smoking at all restaurants and food joints in Peninsular Malaysia effective Jan 1 while Sabah will implement the ban on Feb 1.