Malaysia is slowly coming out of the storm it faced due to the recent halal meat scandal. What are the loopholes the infamous meat cartel used to continue its fraudulent practices for such a long period? Can the Malaysian government take any punitive measures to stop these malpractices once and for all? How can they solve this problem permanently?
Standard operating procedures (SOPs) relating to halal food products will be launched soon, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs).
He said that the SOPs will include amendments to the activities related to halal certification to prevent the occurrence of ‘duplication’ of halal certificates, as well as the use of digitization in the barcodes of halal food products.
“There are certain actions (in compliance with the SOPs) that we see as more effective, and we are working on a mechanism or making a preparation in that direction,” he said.
He said this when met by reporters after presenting donations to flood victims in Slim River and its surrounding areas at Sekolah Kebangsaan Kuala Slim here, today.
Meanwhile, Zulkifli said that he was ready to accept proposals from various parties, including involving the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in an audit carried out on abattoirs before being recognized as qualified to process the supply of imported meat to Malaysia.
“It is in everyone’s knowledge that in the Prime Minister’s Department, there have been MACC officers with us for the past five or six months. God willing, our relationship with the MACC is quite good and maybe strengthened according to the appropriate implementation of issues related to corruption and abuse of power,” he said.
He was commenting on a newspaper report today which quoted former Minister of Agriculture and Agro-based Industries Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub as saying that he had tried to improve the audit procedure of abattoirs abroad that produced frozen meat for import to the country during the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government administration.
Salahuddin was reported to have said that among the improvement efforts planned under the ministry at that time was to involve MACC representatives in the audit process of abattoirs abroad.
However, we are yet uncertain whether the punitive measures or SOPs to be announced by the Malaysian government will help stop the malpractices in the imported meat industry in the country.