Seputeh MP Teresa Kok has demanded the health ministry explain why Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali was not issued the form to undergo quarantine upon returning from Turkey in July.
The former minister said someone has to bear the responsibility after the police said they were instructed by the Attorney-General’s Chambers to classify Khairuddin’s case under “no further action” (NFA).
“This decision clearly shows the double standards. When we came back from Sabah, we had to go through a lot of processes, spending a few hours at the airport, and had to be quarantined. Everyone coming back from overseas had also undergone Covid-19 tests.
“Is this the fault of the health ministry? It’s a very straightforward thing. The ball is in the health ministry’s court,” she told FMT.
The DAP MP said this decision would anger the public as well, following multiple occasions when ordinary citizens were meted heavier fines and even jail terms for similar offences.
“Now we’re told that the health ministry didn’t give (Khairuddin) the quarantine form. How come this wasn’t told to us when the issue was first brought up?” she asked.
Bukit Aman CID chief Huzir Mohamed earlier said the case was classified under NFA because the minister had not been issued the 14B form to undergo quarantine upon returning to the country.
The form is related to Section 15(1) of the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases Act 1988 (Act 342).
Huzir said there was no clear evidence that gave the basis for a charge under Act 342.
From June 10 to July 23, all returnees from overseas were to undergo a 14-day quarantine at home under the Home Surveillance Order. This was then changed to returnees having to be quarantined at designated hotels or quarantine centres.
Khairuddin faced criticism from various quarters in August for violating the order when he attended a Dewan Rakyat meeting shortly after returning from Turkey on July 7.
He was subsequently issued a RM1,000 compound by the health ministry and had been under investigation by the police.
Politicians on both sides of the divide, including Kok and former prime minister Najib Razak, have called for him to resign and to be charged in court, similar to how everyday citizens were also charged and convicted for breaching the mandatory quarantine order. – FMT