KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 2 — Langkawi MP Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has today said he backs the generational tobacco ban law, but urges Putrajaya to fine-tune the Bill so it is enforced fairly.
The former prime minister who was a practising doctor, said that the Bill known as the Generation End Game (GEG) is a good initiative as eradicating smoking in Malaysia is a big and uneasy task that needs to be implemented through calculated steps.
"We need to do it steps by step, starting from smaller steps to eradicate this social crime,
"But if it’s not possible, we should not accept this as the status quo because it will cause more people to die from cancer in our country,” said he said in Parliament.
The Control of Tobacco Product and Smoking Bill 2022, also known as the Anti-Tobacco Bill or the GEG, aims to eradicate smoking in Malaysia by banning those born on 2007 and onwards to buy or own tobacco or vaping products.
Dr Mahathir then suggested that a campaign should be set up for those born before 2007 so that the country can be free from smoking.
However, he added that the enforcement of the Bill should not affect the daily life of society in the long run.
"They may live in fear because their house was being searched, even though they did not smoke," he said of the offence.
"The ways to enforce [the Bill] needs careful consideration, to avoid the non-smokers from becoming the victims of enforcement. So I hope all comments and suggestions given here and Dewan Rakyat will be accepted by the minister,” he added.
The Bill is presented for a second reading at the Parliament today.