Forest reserves are still off limits, Selangor Forestry Dept says after viral pictures of crowds at Sg Pisang waterfall, streams (VIDEO)

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The Selangor Forestry Department warned that strict action will be taken against trespassers at forest reserves in the state during Phase Two of the National Recovery Plan. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
The Selangor Forestry Department warned that strict action will be taken against trespassers at forest reserves in the state during Phase Two of the National Recovery Plan. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 ― The Selangor Forestry Department warned the public that forest reserves in the state are still off limits under Phase Two of the National Recovery Plan (NRP) and that strict action will be taken against trespassers.

The warning follows widely circulated pictures and videos on social media showing crowds of people bathing and picnicking at the Sungai Pisang waterfall and streams in the Gombak Forest Reserve earlier this week, after Selangor transitioned from Phase One to Phase Two of the NRP.

“The issue is not about needing a permit or being fully vaccinated, as all recreational venues in forest reserves are currently closed. Members of the public who are found in such areas will be asked to leave immediately.

“This directive will remain in effect until further notice,” Selangor Forestry director Datuk Ahmad Fadzil Abd Majid was reported as saying by The Star website today.

He added that the police will issue compounds against those found engaging in recreational activities within the forest reserves.

According to the National Security Council, picnicking is allowed for those who are fully-vaccinated for states under Phase Two of the NRP.

However, The Star quoted central Selangor district forestry officer Khairul Nizam Mohamed as saying that the leeway does not include areas in forest reserves.

The newspaper also reported that the state Forestry Department, Selayang Municipal Council (MPS) and district health office set up a monitoring operation at Sungai Pisang last Thursday after the viral photos of the holidaymaking crowd there who ignored public masking and physical distancing rules.

During the operation, the authorities found 50 fully-vaccinated people engaging in recreational activities at the waterfall who were subsequently asked to leave the area.

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