No Decision Yet On Project To Release Genetic Mosquito To Fight Dengue - Dr Hilmi

BALIK PULAU, July 13 (Bernama) -- The Health Ministry has yet to make a final decision on the project to release genetically modified organism (GMO) at public places as a move to contain the spread of dengue in the country.

Its deputy minister, Datuk Seri Dr Hilmi Yahaya, said the project had been put on hold due to the high cost involved and its effectiveness had not been tested fully.

"The release of the GMO mosquito in Bentong in December 2010 focused on the observation to determine the mosquito resistance and how far it can fly," he told reporters at the Wanita Umno Quran reading programme here Sunday.

The ministry, he said, had also not decided on a proposal by a London-based company which handled the project to continue with the research by releasing the GMO mosquito in four selected states, to cost RM100 million.

On dengue, he said, the number of cases continued to show an increase, with an average of between 1,300 and 2,500 cases, resulting in full occupancy in government hospitals, especially in Penang and Selangor.

Normally, only 70 to 90 per cent of hospital beds are occupied, he added.

In a related development, Dr Hilmi, who is Balik Pulau Member of Parliament, said a house to house campaign against dengue would be conducted by Wanita Umno members in the Balik Pulau constituency after Aidilfitri.


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