NGOs Hail Ban On Family Entertainment Centres In Perak

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IPOH, April 6 – The Malaysia Consumers Association (Maconas) urged other states to emulate the Perak government’s decision to stop issuing and renewing licences for family entertainment centres as an effort to combat immoral activities. Maconas secretary-general Datuk Amarjit Singh Gill said it cannot not be denied that many entertainment centre owners allowed their premises to be turned into gambling joints.

“However, if other state governments do not follow Perak’s footsteps, more stringent enforcement should be carried out to ensure there was no violation of the permit conditions. It cannot be denied that many family entertainment centres now are quietly carrying out gambling activities. Actually such entertainment centres are not profitable. Congratulations to Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Zambry Abd Kadir and the Exco for taking the bold decision,” he said.

He was commenting on an announcement by Entrepreneur Development, Cooperatives, Consumer Affairs, Non-Governmental Organisations and Civil Society Committee chairman Datuk Samsuddin Abu Hassan on Sunday about the decision of the state government to stop issuing or renewing licences for family entertainment centres from next year.

National Consumer Complaints Centre board of trustees member Muhammad Sha’ani Abdullah said family entertainment centres can continue to operate but from using a different approach. He said such centres could be opened at theme parks or hotels for better compliance of regulations.

“The centres and the services offered must be determined and the prohibited activities listed. Sports and recreational facilities should also be opened for children, teenagers and youth to spend time with healthy activities,” he said when complimenting the Perak state government.

Sh’ani said the application for entertainment centre licence should obtain the consent of the surrounding residents before such applications are considered by the local authorities. He added that such centres should also have CCTV system extended to the local authority to monitor their activities.

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