Fret not, cinemas are safe, assures GSC

Golden Screen Cinemas Sdn Bhd (GSC) has assured cinema-goers it is safe to watch their favourite movies on the silver screen as the company gears up to open its doors on Friday.

Its public relations and branding manager Sharmine Ishak pointed out to Twentytwo13 there has not been a Covid-19 case that originated from a cinema around the world.

“Although it is an enclosed area, it’s like taking a bus ride or patronising a restaurant. People wear masks in cinemas and only remove them when they eat or drink,” Sharmine said.

“No one really talks to each other … it’s actually one of the safest places.”

Sharmine said the company will ensure strict compliance to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) similar to those practised when cinemas were allowed to operate for a short duration last year.

The industry had been on a hiatus since October last year following the spike of Covid-19 cases leading to the implementation of the second Movement Control Order in January.

He added the government’s decision to allow cinemas to operate following the relaxation of the Movement Control Order in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Penang and Johor, was timely.

The industry suffered RM500 million losses last year.

“We have 34 cinemas with 344 screens nationwide and we are in the midst of negotiating with local councils to find out how many cinemas can open on Friday,” he said.

“We have also been maintaining our cinemas by sanitising and running our projectors since October. We are excited to welcome our patrons.”

He said the SOPs that have been put in place include temperature screening at the entrance of each premise, contact tracing and maintaining physical distancing in the cinema halls and when buying food.

Sharmine said GSC will offer couple seats for families as long as they are able to prove they are from the same household.

“They can show us their identification card or any other supporting documents,” he said.

He, however, said children below 12 and adults above 60 are not encouraged to enter their cinemas.

Here’s a round-up of The News Normal today.

TRACKING DEVICE FOR COVID-19 PATIENTS

Those who test positive for Covid-19 will now have to wear a tracking device for 10 days.

The order is among five new provisions under the Emergency (Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 that will come into force on March 11.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said the high-tech device will also be mandatory for persons under investigation (PUI), close contacts of Covid-19 patients and persons under surveillance (PUS).

LAW MINISTER: NO PARLIAMENT SITTING DURING EMERGENCY

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan said the Cabinet will not advise the Yang-di Pertuan Agong to allow Parliament to convene during the emergency.

Last week, Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah said Parliament may convene during the emergency on a date considered appropriate by the Ruler, based on the advice of the prime minister.

Takiyuddin said as laws can be enacted through the Emergency Ordinance, there is no need for Parliament to convene.

He also pointed out 77 out of 220 MPs in Dewan Rakyat were aged 60 and above and were in the high-risk group.

Two lawmakers (Gerik MP Datuk Hasbullah Osman and Batu Sapi MP Datuk Liew Vui Keong) died last year, reducing the original composition of the Dewan Rakyat from 222 to 220. The by-elections were not held due to the pandemic.

HAVE WE FORGOTTEN ABOUT THE PODIUM PROGRAMME ENHANCEMENT TASK FORCE REPORT?

It is high time for the powers-that-be to reveal documents pertaining to sports, including the findings of the Podium Programme Enhancement Task Force, or sports officials will continue making the same mistakes over and over.

The documents should be publicised because it is of public interest and involves taxpayers’ money.

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