Consumers Association of Penang

Giving voice to the little people...since 1970

Report of Forced Labour in Malaysian Electronics Industry: CAP Urges Government to Investigate and End the Abuse

CAP urges the Ministry of Human Resources and relevant authorities to verify a recent revelation of forced labour in the electronics industry in Malaysia. A study by Verité, a non-profit organization found that nearly one in three workers from seven countries surveyed was working in conditions of forced labour.

The electrical and electronics industry is the leading sector in Malaysia's manufacturing sector, contributing 27.2% employment in 2013. Total employees in the manufacturing sector in 2013 were 2,214,800 or 16.8% of total 13.21million employed persons in Malaysia.

 

Avoid meat to save ourselves and planet earth

The Consumers Association of Penang calls on consumers to avoid eating meat for the benefit of our health and environment.

A latest study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) found "sufficient evidence in humans that the consumption of meat especially processed meat causes colorectal cancer."

 

CAP reiterates call to ban antibiotics in animal feed

The Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) would like to respond to the points raised by the deputy director-general of the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) Datuk Dr Quaza Nizamuddin Hassan Nizam in the article by Fazleena Aziz ‘DVS monitors use of antibiotics in animal feeds’ dated 17 March 2016.

In his statement Dr Quaza said that: ‘A low dosage (of antibiotics) is mixed in animal feed to prevent infection, help digestion and stomach absorption to improve growth performance and quality of livestock products’.

It is precisely this routine use of antibiotics in animal feed as a growth promoter and in the prevention of disease and infection that is creating antibiotic resistance which can be transferred to humans. This global public health threat had prompted many countries including the European Union to ban the routine use of antibiotics in animal feeds. Antibiotics should never be abused to prevent disease and to promote growth in animals. They should only be used to manage and treat infections.

Impose Price Control On Pharmaceutical Drugs

The Consumer Association of Penang calls for the urgent implementation of price control on pharmaceutical drugs.  As stated by the Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainuddin in a local daily, “Malaysians have been paying excessive prices for pharmaceutical drugs due to an absence of government control.”

CAP has been calling for pharmaceutical drugs price control for years but it has fallen on deaf ears. Pharmaceutical drugs are an essential item and health is a basic need. Escalating drug prices put a tremendous strain on the financial resources of the Government and the public. It is about time pharmaceutical drug price control is implemented.

WHERE IS OUR MEDICAL EDUCATION HEADING?

The last few months has seen a lot of discourse in the media on the plight of young trainee doctors or housemen as they are called.   We saw a lot of shocking headlines – ‘not cut out to be doctors’, ‘grappling with housemen woes’, ‘housemen buckling under pressure’ – just to name a few. The most shocking revelation was that housemen comprised the highest number of civil servants who were sacked.   According to some media reports 1 out of 5 housemen drop out annually with the total dropouts numbering up to 1000 or more annually

The average cost of studying medicine at a foreign university branch campus in Malaysia is around RM500,000 excluding living expenses.  Just taking this as a benchmark you’re looking at a loss of RM500 million.  This is a colossal waste of resources. After spending years in tuition and training only to drop out just at the threshold of their medical career.