Friday, 22 September 2023

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More rats problems at Marina Square and Teck Ghee

"Humungous rats" at Teck Ghee
“Humungous rats” at Teck Ghee

In two separate reports, the local press have highlighted more rats problems, this time in Marina Square and the Ang Mo Kio ward of Teck Ghee.

The National Environment Agency (NEA) said it had found signs of rodent infestation in the false ceilings of 14 food outlets at Marina Square.

The shopping mall was in the spotlight several weeks ago after a dead rat was found in a dish served by restaurant Hotpot Culture.

The Chinese newspaper, Lianhe Wanbao, said the NEA made the latest discovery after starting investigations into the Hotpot Culture incident.

The NEA has distributed advisories to the food store operators and will be taking action against one of them for rat droppings found in its premises. Another two outlets, which were found to be dirty, will also be acted against.

In October last year, Marina Square was also under the spotlight for after 12 food outlets were found have rodent activity.

Over at the Teck Ghee ward in Ang Mo Kio, a member of the public reported to an online portal that she had seen “four humongous rats running around” while she was eating at the Teck Ghee Court Market & Food Centre on 22 January.

“They were so fast it was difficult for me to take photos of them,” she said, adding that she was disgusted at the sight of the rats.

The Ang Mo Kio Town Council later released a statement saying that it had informed the National Environment Agency to “continue educating stall owners and market tenants on the importance of good housekeeping inside their stalls and to exercise proper waste disposal” while continuing its “weekly treatment outside the market perimeter and bin centre”.

However, at least one worker at the hawker centre told the media that “the rodent problem is not new, and said the stallholders are doing what they can to guard against the problem.”

The Member of Parliament for the Teck Ghee ward is Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong himself.

The problem of rats infestation across Singapore has come to the fore after hundreds of them were spotted at an open field in Bukit Batok and also over at Punggol Field in the northeast of the island.

On 23 January, experts said the number of rat burrows found in Singapore is “alarming”.

“For a small island like Singapore, the rat burrow figures are very alarming, and do not auger well for our reputation as a clean country,” PestBusters’ technical director, Eugene Surendra, said.

While the authorities have pointed the finger at feeders of stray animals and unhygienic handling of food outlets, experts also said one other cause could be the number of construction sites/work around the island.

The NEA has expressed concerns that this “apparent explosion in the rat population” in Singapore is a potential threat to public health, as it can “lead to diseases spreading.”

Read also: “Number of rat burrows “very alarming”: expert”.

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