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Lets rat about it….

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It perhaps was a case of not raining but of plainly pouring.

In reports gleaned by The Independent it was revealed that a 24-hour food centre in Bishan had to stop operations for a day due to rat infestation and improper handling of refuse.

The suspension order against Kim San Leng Food Centre at Block 511 Bishan Street 13 will take effect on Friday (20 January), the National Environment Agency (NEA) said Monday.

The food centre, which has racked up 16 demerit points in the past year, was also fined $1,100 for the offences.

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Shi Jie Foo, a 33-year-old regular patron, in news reports said that he spotted rats at the food centre on a number of occasions. “I will eat here again. I think the vendors are trying their best to keep the place hygienic,” Shi said.

No sooner had that happened it was a case of diarrhoea and vomiting at Oasis Primary School in Punggol.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) was notified of the cases on 7 Jan, said a joint statement issued by MOH, the National Environment Agency (NEA), the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) and national water agency PUB yesterday.

Two were hospitalised for a day for dehydration, and most have recovered after seeking outpatient treatment. According to the joint statement, there have been no new cases since 14 Jan.

During an inspection of the school canteen on 9 Jan, no hygiene lapses were detected, said the agencies. Laboratory tests are being conducted on food samples collected from the school. Water samples collected by PUB were found to be safe for drinking and investigations are proceeding apace.

The outbreak of the incidents harkens back to what happened at the famous Geylang Rojak shop in 2005. In that incident one person died and a few were injured.

Unhygienic food centres operating under unsanitary conditions are an unsightly occurrence in Singapore. Though there are few and far between in Singapore, cases of massive outbreaks of diarrhoea and food poisoning are rare.

Last year renowned chicken rice restaurant Pow Sing was on the carpet over a complaint of gastroenteritis incurred by patrons.

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