Monday, May 07, 2007

Even School Children's Milk Supply Is Not Safe From Greed

From Bernama: Suppliers Under School Milk Programme Told To Get New Stock.

The Education Ministry has ordered milk suppliers under the School Milk Assistance Programme in Perlis, Kedah, Pahang and Terengganu to replace their existing stocks with new ones. Deputy Education Minister Datuk Hon Choon Kim said this was because the Health Ministry had found contaminants in the milk.

Recently, many students in several schools were rushed to hospitals after they complained of stomach ache after drinking from milk cartons supplied to them under the programme.

"The existing stocks must be returned to the manufacturers to be destroyed and be replaced with new stocks whose expiry period must be at least two weeks," Hon told reporters after meeting the suppliers here today.

He said a special committee had been set up under the state-level Cleanliness, Safety and Health Committee to monitor milk supplies from the manufacturers and where they were stored.

The school milk programme began in 1981 and presently, it involves seven suppliers nationwide.

****** Just a few questions. Who are these seven suppliers? Are they related to any high ranking official or politician? Are any of them ketua cawangan Umno? Who selected them and on what basis? Did they have prior experience in retailing milk products and do they have at least a little knowledge about proper storage, the dangers of providing expired milk and the responsibility that goes with catering to children's needs? How many of these suppliers have had past incidents of passing off bad milk to kids? What action was taken by the Ministry of 'Hell' in these cases?

It speaks volumes of the lax attitude taken by officials and others responsible for the selection and monitoring of these so-called suppliers when at this crucial juncture the deputy health minister has to remind them that new stocks must have an expiry period of at least two weeks! By appointing cronies, family members and the totally ignorant and unqualified to every possible government project, we have seen the serious damage being done almost on a daily basis, the latest being the embarrassing glitches at Putrajaya. Falling ceilings is one thing but putting innocent schoolchildren at grave risk because of inefficiency or pure greed is a much more potentially serious situation.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

While it is academic to pre-judge the case as involving corruption as there is no evidence, there might be practices of cronyism in a country where there is no shortage of "piranha" small time businessmen. When economic policies are racially based, it certainly encourages "less than expert individuals" to gobble opportunities even though they are not expert in the domain. Hence RM2 companies are given contracts to build multi million projects with proprietors knowing nuts about business. You call this greed, but then remember, this is BN policy of development for decades. Money, buildings, physical wealth is the "mantra" of this government. The rest are just tokenism on rhetorics repeated but never in real practice. White elephants on intregrity and religious values are just for sight seeing like the museum. Cases of the milk supply is no extraordinaire under such circumstances of rapidly eroding societal values under the BN.

9:30 AM GMT+8  
Blogger kittykat46 said...

I'm pretty sure the milk distribution wasn't handled directly by any of the reputable milk producers. As usual in Bolehland, the contracts are parceled out to politically connected cronies, who don't have a clue on the safe handling, storage and transportation of the milk.

P.S. I was a rural kid back in the 1980's, and I actually benefitted from one of the early milk supply programs. The program itself is non-race based, and I quite support it.

But the supply contract is another thing.....

9:46 AM GMT+8  

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