46 estate workers lose jobs and quarters

  • Letters
  • Friday, 31 Jan 2003

FORTY-SIX estate workers in Kuala Ketil, Kedah, will face a bleak future now that the company employing them has sold the land for development. 

Malaysia Nanban reported that the estate management had failed to keep its promises to the affected workers to arrange alternative employment and had forced them to vacate their quarters. 

The paper quoted National Union of Plantation Workers (NUPW) state secretary I. Sandanadas as saying the management had earlier agreed in a meeting with the state Human Resource Committee chairman and State MIC chairman to arrange re-employment for the workers. 

Sandanadas said the management had in each and every meeting with the NUPW pledged to fulfil the demands of the union.  

He said there was also a state ruling to compel the management to provide alternative housing for the affected estate workers if the estate land was taken up for development.  

The increasing number of diabetes patients in the country was worrying the Consumer Association of Penang (CAP), reported Tamil Nesan

CAP president S.M. Mohamed Idris said about 1.6 million people were suffering from diabetes which was about 8% of the population. 

He said the patients were dependent on insulin for the rest of their life. 

The paper said statistics had indicated that the number of cases of the disease had increased to 39% over the past 10 years. 

CAP welcomed the Government's announcement that steps were taken to reduce the content of sugar in processed food and canned drinks, but expressed doubt whether it could achieve its aim. 

Five years ago, the Government held meetings with processed food and soft drink manufacturers who agreed to reduce the sugar content in their products. However, there were no positive results until today, the daily quoted Idris as saying. 

Although it was up to individuals to choose their food, the Government had the responsibility to ensure food sold in the market was safe for consumers, the daily added.

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