Sarawak DAP offers legal aid to pig bristle brush traders

Traders may still face prosecution for mislabelling the products even though the raids on shops have stopped.

KUCHING: Sarawak DAP has offered legal assistance to traders in the state who may be prosecuted for mislabelling pig-bristle paintbrushes even though the domestic trade, cooperatives and consumerism minister has called for a halt to the raids on shops.
Sarawak DAP leader Chong Chieng Jen expressed relief at the call to end the raids that he claimed would “destroy the harmonious social fabric” of Sarawak and cause “ill feelings” among the ethnic groups there.
“Such extremism has no place in Sarawak and we should not allow it.
“Sarawak is built on principles of a secular state and a foundation of tolerance and respect for all races and religions,” he said today.
It was reported that 13 business premises were raided in the state and hundreds of brushes seized for forensic tests.
Business owners can be prosecuted and fined a maximum RM100,000 and jailed up to three years or both, if found guilty.
Deputy Chief Minister James Jemut Masing is also glad to see the end of the raids.
“I am happy to note that Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Hamzah Zainudin has ordered a stop to the raids on shops in Malaysia.
“They were uncalled for, especially in Sarawak,” he said.
Hamzah has ordered enforcement officers to cease all raids, following a Cabinet decision.
Traders have been given a month to correctly label their goods, including to specify if they are made of materials derived from pig or dog.
The ministry has so far seized a total of 2,000 paintbrushes made of pig bristles, in nationwide raids since Tuesday.
Masing denounced the raids as detrimental to inter-religious relations.
“Overzealous behaviour of Muslim authorities regarding products sold in Malaysia will cause ill feelings in people of other religions. It will divide instead of unite (the people) as we live in a multi-faith society.”
Freemalaysiatoday February 9,2017