KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 5 — Consumers might as well drink petrol instead of water now that fuel prices have dropped, the Muslims Consumers Association of Malaysia (PPIM) said today.
Comparing the price of mineral water to the price of petrol at the pumps, PPIM president Datuk Nadzim Johari said the price of a 500ml bottle of RON97 petrol was 20 sen to 50 sen cheaper.
“A campaign to drink petrol because it’s cheaper must be launched,” he told reporters here after announcing the set-up of a Consumer Boycott Centre.
He also lashed out at giant mineral water manufacturer Spritzer for selling expensive bottled water priced above RM1 for a 500ml and called on consumers to boycott its products.
“Based on research, we recommend to boycott Spritzer. Because when we go out we saw Spritzer is the biggest, in more petrol stations, everywhere.
“They are so monopolistic, they should be more friendly to others,” Nadzim said.
He urged the authorities to cap the retail price of 500ml bottles of mineral water at RM1.
Nadzim also compared bottles of Spritzer’s mineral water sold at cafe chain stores Old Town White Coffee and Pappa Rich to bottled drinking water sold at the 1Malaysia government-backed retail outlets, which he said priced at RM3.50 and RM0.39 respectively.
“How much does it cost to process water?” he asked, before saying “The cost is unreasonable”.
Nadzim stressed that the Consumer Boycott Centre initiative had nothing to do with Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri’s call for Malays to boycott Chinese vendors.
He agreed with the agriculture and agro-based industries minister that the price of goods were being raised indiscriminately, but stopped short of pointing the finger at a specific race.
“I think that he was talking was really facts,” Nadzim said.
“Malay also got, Indian also got, Chinese also got. When you’re talking about capitalists, they are all the same colour,” he added.
The Consumer Boycott Centre consists of 20 other non-governmental organisations and aims to get people to take part in a three-month boycott of allegedly profiteering businesses.
The group believes it can get 17 million people to participate, through phone messaging service WhatsApp and social media.
The group said it will also investigate the alleged price hikes of other service providers ranging from car workshops to telecommunications firms and banks.