19 Tutong restos certified for cleanliness

National 2 minutes, 18 seconds


NINETEEN restaurant and food stall owners, out of 29, passed government sanitary inspections, but none got an “A-Grade”, the Acting Director of the Municipal Board of Tutong said yesterday.

In his speech at the official residence of the Tutong District Officer, Shahminan Hj Tengah said the restaurants and food stalls were inspected and graded by the Ministry of Health and the municipal board.

Of the 19 restaurant and food stall owners, two got Grade B certificates while the rest got Grade C marks, he said.

Grade B means a score of between 81 to 90 per cent while Grade C between 71 to 80 per cent.

Shahminan said none was given a Grade A unlike last year, but he did not elaborate on the reason.

The inspection was conducted for two days last 18 and 19 December, and the grading was made on January 24.

A personnel from the Tutong Municipal Department, who declined to be named, told The Brunei Times that some of the previous Grade A restaurants or food stalls were downgraded to Grade B.

“To get an “A” is not easy, as the food premises or stalls have to exceed 91 per cent in the inspection,” she said.

Ten premises were not given certificates at all as they failed to pass the inspection requirements of the panel, said the Acting Director.

“The results were decreasing compared to previous years. Many of the Grade B achievers dropped to Grade C this year," he said.

He also noted that almost 100 per cent of the food premises in Tutong have been given Halal certificates, except for three new restaurants.

“From this grading result, it is clear that we need to increase [unannounced] inspections to ensure the cleanliness of the restaurants and food stalls in Tutong.

“They should observe or fulfill the standards given by the government,” said Shahminan.

The certificates were handed over by Deputy Permanent Secretary (Professional and Technical) of the Ministry of Health, Dr Hjh Rahmah Hj Md Said.

Speaking at the sidelines, 50 year-old recipient Norhaya Hj Dullah said that she was satisfied with the grade she obtained.

“Knowing that some of the food stalls were not given the certificates, it makes me feel that “C” is enough for me,” she said.

“But of course I have to continue to improve my grade because as a food provider, we have to convince our customers by dispaying the grades we obtained," Norhaya added.

The panel of inspectors was composed of representatives from government agencies such as the Quality and Food Safety under the Ministry of Health, Tutong Fire and Rescue Department, the Department of Environment, Parks and Recreation (JASTRE), and the Tutong Municipal Department.

Yesterday’s ceremony, which was still part of the World Health Day celebration on April 7, promotes food safety and the health of the environment.

The Brunei Times