The city hall in the Malaysian city of Kota Kinabalu, proposed that buyers of contraband cigarettes be penalized along with the sellers of the smuggled smokes, according to a story in the the Borneo Post.
Mayor Datuk Abidin Madingkir, who made the proposal in his speech during the launch of Ops Pacak 2013, said buyers of contraband cigarettes have never been implicated by the relevant authorities in the effort to stamp out the smuggling and sale of contraband items, including cigarettes, in Sabah.
“All this while, we have only compounded or sentenced to imprisonment the smugglers and contraband peddlers. We never penalized the customers. Hence, it is time for us to think of imposing strict penalties on the buyers,” he said.
Abidin said that for a start, buyers caught with these contraband items should be given warnings or reminders that their action of buying such illegal items will not be without incrimination.
“The aim of this is to remind them not to become contributors to the flooding presence of illegal cigarettes in the local market,” he said.
Abidin also spoke on the city’s role as a tourist location and how the presence of illegal cigarette peddlers was an eyesore.
“On the part of DBKK (City Hall), we have often received complaints from the public about the sales of contrabands within the city. We only have a limited number of enforcers and are ill-equipped to handle the threat posed by certain peddlers and cigarette smugglers,” he said.
Category: Breaking News