Various steps to ensure school food programme not abused, says Maszlee

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 22 Nov 2018

Dr Maszlee Malik. -filepic

KUALA LUMPUR: Almost half a million students are benefitting from the ongoing supplementary food programme (RMT) this year, said Dr Maszlee Malik.

The Education Minister said the ministry will keep ensuring that all forms of aid for students will not be mismanaged and implemented in an orderly manner.

"To ensure that the schools' allocation for RMT is managed in the best financial manner, the ministry has taken several steps.

"This includes ensuring the selected headmasters have the integrity and are trustworthy to hold such a positions," he told Datuk Mohd Fasiah Mohd Fakeh (BN-Sabak Bernam) during Question Time in Parliament.

Mohd Fasiah had asked the Ministry to state the number of students benefitting from the RMT programme and steps taken to ensure that its funds will not be mismanaged.

Dr Maszlee said the Education Ministry will, from time to time, improve its treasury circular (surat pekeliling kewangan) based on the input it received from monitoring the programme.

He added that an SOP (standard operating procedure) with a comprehensive guide on managing the RMT programme will be distributed to schools.

This includes student selection, contract management, payment process, and assessment of the student's physical progress.

"It is done in a systematic and orderly manner with records that are constantly updated," he said.

He added that a monitoring process was introduced at both the district and state education department levels to ensure schools will adhere to the RMT treasury circular and Ministry guidelines.

"We also urge all parties, including the parent-teacher associations (PIBG), to report if they find any misconduct by any parties, including the school's headmaster, in handling the RMT programme.

"This will help the Ministry to monitor and ensure that the assistance will be distributed to the targeted groups," he said.

Asked if the contractor handling the RMT programme will be terminated immediately if they fail to meet with current quality and cleanliness standards, Dr Maszlee said it will be on a case to case basis.

"Those involving in food poisoning and cleanliness problems, it will be based on a case to case basis.

"If it is the first time, a warning will be issued and a chance will be given to improve their services. 

"If repeated, stern action will be taken against them," he said.

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