Sales gimmicks in schools cause concern


  • Nation
  • Thursday, 27 Feb 2003

BY FARID JAMALUDIN

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Institute of Business Ethics has asked the Education Ministry to review guidelines involving the promotion of “health products” to primary school students nationwide. 

This is because several companies allegedly had the Ministry's permission to enter schools and use their facilities to promote their products, including holding an assembly.  

The institute’s director Dr Zainal Abidin Majid said parents complained that schools were “opening” their doors to such sales gimmicks. 

“It is unethical for any businessman to conduct his business this way,” he added. 

Last week, an assembly was called at a primary school in Brickfields to allow “agents” of a canned soup company to sell their products to the pupils. 

Angry parents complained to the Business Ethics Institute. 

Zainal said he would take the matter up with the Education Ministry soon. 

The school's headmistress said the company’s agent came armed with a letter from the Education Ministry allowing the company to market their products at the school. 

Deputy Education Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Shamsuddin said it was wrong for companies to disrupt a school’s timetable by calling for special assemblies to sell health products. 

“It is fine if they (companies) are doing it after school hours or during the weekends but not during school hours,” he added.  

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