Education Ministry sets up squad to conduct inspections

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 27 Jan 2005

KLANG: The Education Ministry has set up an anti-dengue squad to conduct spot checks and take action against schools found to be breeding aedes mosquitoes. 

“Let me forewarn the school authorities. Keep your premises clean because you will never know when the squad members will be visiting,” said Deputy Education Minister Datuk Hon Choon Kim. 

“We will invite officers from the Health Ministry to join us on our rounds so that they can issue (fines) to those schools. We will also bring the press along,” said Hon, who is the squad chief.  

“If we find aedes larvae, stern action will be meted out immediately and other internal reprimands will follow,” he added.  

The school authorities must bear the consequences if they were found to be breeding the mosquitoes in their compounds, he said.  

“If the fault clearly lies with the school authorities, appeals will not be entertained,” he said. 

“However, if the students contracted dengue at home or elsewhere, it is only fair that we do not blame the schools,” he said yesterday after opening the annual meeting of the heads of Chinese national-type primary schools in Selangor. 

He added that the ministry would conduct investigations before determining the parties at fault. 

The ministry has set up temporary hotline number 012-971 9389 for parents and other concerned groups to alert the ministry about schools that are breeding mosquitoes.  

In Kuantan, Pahang Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob has hit out at state district offices and the Health Department for a lack of coordination in the fight against dengue. 

Citing the case of a 16-year-old schoolgirl from Beserah who died of dengue fever a few days ago, Adnan said: “My wife, who works at the school, informed the authorities on the need to conduct fogging in the school, but no one came.” 

“All the departments involved should act now and not wait for us (to give) directives,” said Adnan, who declined to reveal the number of dengue cases in Pahang. 

“If the fogging is done after someone has contracted dengue and dies, I think it is too late. The authorities must act now,” he said after chairing the state executive council meeting in Kuantan yesterday. 

It was also reported that Mentakab Hospital and the Temerloh government clinic were fined RM500 each recently when their compounds were found to be aedes breeding grounds.  

In Ipoh, state Health, Science, Technology and Environment Committee chairman Datuk Tan Chin Meng said Perak had 114 confirmed cases of dengue fever in the second week of this month.  

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