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Villagers in Pahang shocked: Rice packs, dry foods dumped and burned roadside

Residents in Kuala Krau, Pahang of Malaysia were shocked to find hundreds of rice packs, flour, and sardine cans dumped beside the road. Former MP took responsibility, citing contamination. Netizens criticised he should seek help from authorities for proper disposal.



PAHANG, MALAYSIA: Residents of Rumpun Makmur, Kuala Krau, were recently shocked to discover hundreds of rice packs, flour, and cans of sardines among the food items disposed of at a garbage dump beside the road.

Videos taken by local residents quickly went viral on social media on Thursday (18 April), prompting questions about who would waste such large quantities of food instead of distributing them to those less fortunate who are in dire need of these resources.

The incident was first brought to light by a netizen on a Facebook group called “This is Kuala Krau,” questioning whose responsibility it was and tagging a local Member of Parliament’s service centre, demanding answers.

According to the post, the dump site appears to be located by the roadside near Gunung Senyum, Kuala Krau.

Although the post was later deleted, the videos continued to circulate widely on social media.

From the photos and videos seemingly captured by villagers, hundreds of rice packs can be seen scattered on the ground, along with various packaged food items such as flour, tea, and vermicelli.

A portion of the disposal area can be seen ablaze on the ground, with scattered sardine cans.

The disposal of these food items in the dump area has raised suspicions among villagers, questioning why the food was wasted and demanding that authorities investigate the matter.

Some netizens have also speculated that these could be surplus food items left over from aid missions to monsoon flood victims.

However, others argue that this does not make sense, as some have pointed out that there are still goods that have not yet expired.

However, in the latest development, some group members in “This is Kuala Krau” revealed that the area filled with food stockpiles appeared to be empty and completely clean on Friday early morning.

“It’s clear until maybe 3 or 4 in the morning it was done. The video shows the site of the visit in the image. Spacious and the work was done swiftly.”

“Anyone diligent or knowledgeable, please tell them where they disposed of it,” a netizen wrote.

Former Kuala Krau MP responded

Meanwhile, another netizen shared that former Kuala Krau MP, Dato’ Sri Dr. Haji Ismail Mohamed Said, had issued a statement taking full responsibility for the disposal issue.

In the statement, he clarified that the rice and kitchen goods were stocked items always prepared to meet public demand during his tenure as MP for the area.

He explained that these kitchen goods were purchased using personal allocation before the 15th General Election in 2022, emphasizing that no distribution of goods to the public was allowed during the campaign period.

“The purchase of these kitchen goods does not involve Federal Government allocation or Pahang State Government allocation. ”

He further clarified, “It also did not involve goods allocation during the COVID-19 period or preparations for front-line flood response.”

Dr Haji Ismail, who is also a former Deputy Speaker of Parliament, shared that on 5 April, he received a complaint from a neighbour about a foul smell emanating from the storage area of these kitchen goods.

An investigation into the storage area revealed several rat carcasses, and the rice and kitchen goods were found to be contaminated with rice weevils.

“Other goods are also no longer suitable for distribution to the public due to contamination, ” he said.

Dr Haji Ismail explained that some of the rice had been given to poultry farmers in the area, while the rest had been disposed of.

“I take responsibility and deeply regret this matter, and I apologize to all parties for the oversight in monitoring the disposal of these kitchen goods,” the former MP said.

Following Dr Haji Ismail’s explanation, some comments expressed disbelief at the value of the discarded goods, suggesting that they were worth hundreds of thousands of ringgit.

Some questioned why the politician didn’t seek assistance from the fire department or local authorities for a more appropriate method of disposal.

“If (the former MP) couldn’t figure out how to dispose of these items, why didn’t he consult the relevant authorities, such as the Department of Environment or the Fire Department? ”

“He used to be a cabinet minister; surely something as small as this should have been considered.”

It’s worth noting that Dr Haji Ismail is also a former Deputy Minister for the Home Affairs of Malaysia from 2022 to 2022 until he lost his Parliament seat in GE15 in November 2022.

Minister orders investigation into rice disposal in Kuala Krau

Despite Dr Haji Ismail’s clarification, Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu has directed the Rice and Grain Supervision Authority (KPB) to investigate the rice disposal incident.

Mohamad stated that an official statement regarding the incident will be issued soon.

Separately, The Solid Waste and Public Cleansing Management Corporation (SWCorp) of Pahang has initiated an investigation since Thursday regarding the case.

Its director, Sharudin Hamid confirmed that the illegal waste disposal site has been operational since 2014 on Felcra-owned land.

“The area of the illegal waste disposal site is approximately 0.1 hectares and is managed by the Village Development and Security Committee (JPKK) of Rumpun Makmur,” he explained at a press conference at the SWCorp Pahang office in Kuantan Friday.

Sharudin informed that the site has been ordered to be closed by SWCorp’s enforcement team this morning, and further investigations are ongoing regarding the incident.

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With personal transport common in Malaysia. Why not have a “garage” give-away and publish it on the social media.

Inform people who come that some goods may be spoilt or degraded in quality and let them perform their own thorough checks.

Yet everything was thrown away instead.

Ultimately, all will be NFAed as is common in Malaysia.

After all this is Malaysia, Truly Asia