SIBU: Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Office (Islamic Affairs) Datuk Daud Abdul Rahman says they have the mechanism to ascertain the authenticity of halal certificate and keep fake ones at bay.
He said he had instructed his officers to conduct checks on all eateries.
“They are going around not only in Kuching but also other towns from time-to-time. We will take stern action against those found using fake halal certificate. Be mindful that we have ways to determine if the certificate is genuine or not,” Daud said when met here yesterday.
He, however, said he did not know if there were cases of traders in Sarawak committing such an offence. He said they had detected quite a number of cases of businesses displaying photocopied halal certificate on their premises.
These businesses, he added, had photocopied the certificate from somewhere to hoodwink their customers that their products were obtained from a halal source.
“They can, for instance, photocopy a halal certificate belonging to a slaughter house which has a genuine halal cert and display the copy at their own premises, such as a cold storage.
“This is not allowed. A cold storage must apply for its own halal certificate.”
To encourage better compliance with halal certification, Daud said that starting this year a probationary halal certificate for two years would be issued.
“The operators must use legal premises approved by the local authority and the place must be clean. If they are keen, they have to apply (halal cert) first and we will inspect the place. If say, they can achieve 80 per cent compliance, we will give them a two-year probationary halal certificate.
“But they need to make good the 20 per cent within that period. Our job is to assist. It is not true that it is difficult to get the halal certificate.
The halal certificate is renewable every two years.
Still on the halal issue, Daud said stern action would be taken against those misusing the halal logo and displaying Quranic verses in their shops as they could mislead the public.
“If you don’t have a halal certificate, don’t mislead Muslim customers,” he said.
He also said as for displaying the ‘Serve no pork’ signs at eateries, though slightly confusing, no action could be taken (against the operators) as there was no mention of halal anywhere on the premises.