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Sep 25, 2008

DOH Minister Lin Fang-yu resigns

ICRT reports ...

To shoulder the blame for the public turmoil over tainted China-made milk
powder, Taiwan's Department of Health Minister Lin Fang-yu has tendered his

Lin, a cardiosurgeon-turned-administrator, says he is awaiting the Cabinet's
response to his resignation offer.

Lin's resignation comes roughly two weeks after the disclosure that 25 tons
of melamine-contaminated milk powder had been imported from China into
the country.

The DOH's follow-up handling of the issue has drawn widespread criticism,
with the latest development being the agency's relaxation on the limit of
melamine, a toxic chemical.

Previously the DOH's tolerance for melamine was it's 2.5 parts per
million, the same standard adopted by the Hong Kong authorities.

This abrupt change in policy resulted in numerous products bound for the
incinerators suddenly becoming legitimate again.

But the Consumer's Foundation, the CF, experts in the food industry and food
studies have all lashed out at the DOH's decision, criticizing it as being
negligent of people's welfare.

CF secretary Wu Jia-cheng says studies have shown that prolonged exposure to
melamine can lead to diseases of the kidney or bladder, as well as bladder

Wu says the DOH should not have yielded to pressure from business.

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