When the law enforcers take on a relatable approach to talk to the people, you would know that particular issue pains both the police as well as the citizens.
In a Facebook post yesterday (Sept 20), Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) announced that any individual who “reserved” a parking space by standing over it is a prosecutable offence which the offender would be slapped with a fine of no more than RM2,000 or jail up to six months.
PDRM started the post by asking netizens if they had ever faced human parking offender “chup” a parking spot.
It wrote, “Have you ever had the experience of going round and round in the parking lot to look for an empty spot but only to find that someone is standing, sitting or whatever they are doing in the space to “chup” it?
“It is undeniable that it doesn’t only this happen in Malaysia but also in some developed countries. What is clear here is that it’s an irresponsible and annoying act, at the same time, endangers personal safety.”
The police said such an action is punishable under “Unlawful interference and importuning” under Section 50(3) of the Road Transport Act 1987, which stipulates:
“If any person, other than lawful authority, is situated on any street or in any parking lot for the urgent purpose of importuning any other person in respect of the watching or cleaning of a motor vehicle, or for the purpose of directing any driver of a motor vehicle in respect of parking on such road or at such place, he shall be guilty of an offence.”
It continued that the penalty for this offence under Section 119 is a fine of up to RM2,000 or imprisonment of up to 6 months, the penalty amount and imprisonment period will increase if subsequent offences were to follow.
The post resonated very well with fellow Malaysians because of recent furores which saw such “human parking” offenders arrogantly refused to leave the empty spots. Many of these incidents were documented in videos and the footage had gone viral on social media, attracting mainstream media to cover the stories too. The PDRM post had gone viral, attaining over 2,500 shares in one day.
Came along with the post was also a picture collage of four recent “human parking” incidents. One of them happened in March which saw a woman refused to give up her “reservation” on the parking spot in 1Utama Shopping Mall. The story was even covered by NST.