Smartphone apps among measures to montior purchase of subsidised goods, says Minister

KUCHING: The use of smartphone apps to record purchases of controlled goods has been proposed as one of the measures to monitor the distribution of subsidised goods, says Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi.

The Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister said the government was still looking into the best possible method and several recommendations were given to prevent leakages in the wholesale purchase of goods including cooking oil in 1kg polybags in the market.

"One person is only allowed to buy two packets (of cooking oil in polybag) but some consumers, after making their purchase, will go to another store and buy some more, we are aware that this is happening.

"With the smartphone application we may be able to track and prevent further purchases and this applies not only to cooking oil but other subsidised items as well,” he said after visiting a cooking oil packaging plant here Saturday (June 25).

In warning industry players not to get involved in misappropriation of subsidised and controlled goods, Nanta said he would not hesitate to suspend their company licence if they were found guilty.

Also present during the visit were Sarawak Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs deputy director Peter J. Berinus Agang and Kota Sentosa assemblyman Wilfred Yap Yau Sin.

Meanwhile, in a separate press conference, Nanta said the ministry's role in determining the ceiling price of chicken in the market was focused on enforcement in ensuring that traders adhered to the stipulated ceiling price.

He said an engagement session was held on Saturday with poultry industry players as well as senior officials from the Ministry and the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry to discuss the issue

On Friday (June 24), Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced that the price of chicken in the market would not be floated so as not to burden the people.

Meanwhile, in a media statement Saturday, Nanta said that no complaints or offences were recorded in Sarawak on the hoarding of controlled items during the 2022 Anti-Sorok campaign held from January to June 18 this year.

He added that so far, the supply of packaged cooking oil in the state was sufficient and the shortage of supply in some premises was only temporary. - Bernama

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