Published on: Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Sandakan: The Government's move to reduce fuel subsidies and eliminate sugar subsidies undeniably is a first step towards a larger rationalisation exercise.
However, Azroy, a consumer here, said this development should not be a reason and opportunity for traders, restaurant operators and others to raise the price of foods, beverage and merchandise until it burdens the consumers/customers.
Referring to his own experiences with his wife and two children recently where they were having a meal at one of the restaurants in Batu 6 near here, he said the price paid for the drinks and food was not rational where he had paid a total of RM18 for three different types of cold drinks and a set of cheese flavoured bananas.
"If you look at the receipt (pic) given, my wife and I were very surprised at the prices stated.
The price of a glass of flavoured cold drink costs RM4, while it was RM6 for the banana cheese," he said, adding that the price of the drinks was disproportionate to the restaurant which was a normal restaurant and not air-conditioned.
"In addition, I also found the restaurant does not provide price signage or menu book to facilitate their customers to see a list of foods, drinks and their prices, " he said when forwarding a report to the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (Ministry) Sandakan Office regarding the rights of consumers.
Azroy said he acted because it was the right of consumers and believed the authorities will carry out their obligations to investigate and take follow-up action on the restaurant so that the rights of consumers in the area are protected.
Meanwhile, Azroy also hoped the authorities would also carry out operations and inspection on restaurants that charge exorbitant prices for food and also premises that do not display price tags, as well standardise the price list of food and beverages as well as the level of cleanliness for the benefit of consumers.
In the meantime, a restaurateur here also found the prices were too high for essential items such as fresh vegetables in the market.
The complainant, who declined to be named, also said the price of pepper was unstable and sometimes hit quite a high price per kilogram as a result of supply shortage in the market.
However, he agreed the rise in prices of fresh products in the market is not an excuse for higher charges to consumers who order food and drinks at his restaurant.
"I am confident that the ministry will continue to monitor the price of fresh produce in every market in the district," he said.