Fake health cards: Dept official held
Published on: Tuesday, July 16, 2019
By: Sherell Jeffrey

KOTA KINABALU: A Health Department official in Ranau has been detained to facilitate investigations into alleged illegal issuance of fake health cards to food handlers in the area. 

The forged documents were discovered during inspections on food premises in the district following a food poisoning case detected at a secondary school. 

Five premises, four of which are secondary school canteens, were found to have the fake documents.  

The suspect, who is attached to the Ranau Hospital, was picked up on July 10 following a police report lodged by an Assistant Health Officer, who is also based at the same hospital.

Police also seized 25 pieces of suspected fake health cards, three Medical Officer chops and one Ranau Hospital chop from the suspect’s house. 

Initial investigations showed the suspect has been active since 2014, according to Sabah Deputy Police Commissioner Datuk Zaini Jass.

He said the documents were found to have been forged based on the invalid chops and non-registration in the Health Department’s system. 

Zaini there was also no record of payment, which, according to procedure, each applicant who has undergone health inspection is required to pay a fee of RM100 for the card. 

“The signature on the document is also found to be dubious as the officer concerned had already been posted to the peninsula since January this year,” Zaini told a press conference at the State police headquarters in Kepayan, here, Monday. 

Investigations are ongoing on whether the officer was aware that his signature had been fraudulently used to produce the documents and whether the food premise operators were aware that the documents were produced in an unlawful manner.

Zaini said investigations also showed all the five food outlets obtained the documents from an agent who imposed a fee of RM100 each. 

He advised the public, especially food handlers, against opting for the easy way in obtaining documents. 

“Go through the proper channel,” he said.

Under the Food Hygiene Regulations 2009 issued by the Ministry of Health, all food handlers must first undergo a medical examination and be trained in food handling in order to apply for the card.

Also present was State Commercial Crime Investigation Department Head, Supt Moses Govindarajoo.


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