🌸Huazong calls for review of DBKL’s ruling on alcohol sale🌸
The Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia (Huazong) has urged the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) to review its latest ruling banning liquor sale in convenience stores, Chinese medicine halls and sundry shops set to be enforced next year October 1.
Urging this, its President Tan Sri T.C Goh opined that DBKL owes the non-Muslim community a clear and convincing explanation on such a ruling, failing which it would be deemed a blatant violation of Malaysia’s unique multiracial setting.
“The relevant authority must respect the right of the non-Muslim community to sell, buy and consume alcohol,” he underscored.
He further opined that, under the spirit of democratic and transparent governance, DBKL should prior to imposing such a ruling engage with the non-Muslim community in a dialogue, to better explain the objective of such a ruling, as well as to listen to the views and proposals of the affected business operators, so as to achieve a ‘win-win’ outcome for all quarters.
He was responding to the news report on DBKL’s announcement of its decision not to issue liquor licence to sundry and grocery shops, convenience stores as well as Chinese medicine shops in Kuala Lumpur, starting October 1 next year. The duration for renewal of existing licence will be granted until 30 September, 2021.
However, pure or mixed liquor products in traditional medicine will be exempt from this ruling and beer will still be allowed to be sold at these premises from 7am to 9pm but must be placed separately from other beverages.
According to DBKL’s new guidelines, those eligible for liquor licence applications were entertainment outlets, restaurants, warehouses supplying liquors and programmes serving liquors.
“If such a proposed move is being part of Islamisation effort, or due to drunk-driving issue, it would be unacceptable to non-Muslim community,” he said.
He thus urged the DBKL to conduct a dialogue with the affected business operators and relevant organizations, to listen to their views and to resolve this issue, as soon as possible.
On the relevant authority’s requirement to display alcoholic drinks in the ‘non-Halal’ section of supermarkets, he said such a requirement is acceptable. He added that if a business establishment is permitted to sell beer, then it should also be allowed to sell hard liquor.
He further opined that, under the current pandemic inflicted severe economic recession, where almost all businesses have been badly affected, the relevant authority should be more discerning when introducing its policies, so as not to further complicate the situation, or worse, inflict more hardship to the people and businesses.