KL knows what should be done
Published on: Wednesday, June 19, 2019
By: Neil Chan

KOTA KINABALU: Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said he favours relocating the Lok Kawi army base to Sabah’s east coast as well as placing more naval assets there instead of Lumut in Perak to prevent the recurrence of threats originating from a neighbouring country.

Shafie, who is also Sabah State Security Council (MKN) Chairman, said the Lok Kawi Army Camp headquarters is needed more in the East Coast than its present site near here.

“This is not for political reasons but it involves the interests of the state. If such issues can be addressed, it will prevent the occurrence of frequent security threats in the East Coast of Sabah,” he said, referring to the latest reported kidnapping of 10 foreign fishermen off Lahad Datu.

He said he had already relayed this matter to Federal and it is up to the latter. “If we can increase the presence of troops in this area, it can deter and prevent outsiders from carrying out their criminal activities.

He said he was uncertain if the Lumut Naval Headquarters (in Perak) actually needed complete assets and equipment there because security threats and pirates did not occur there.

“We have to make sure ships are placed in the East Coast such as in Lahad Datu. I have notified the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) on the requirement for these vessels. 

“It is up to the top leadership in Kuala Lumpur to make a decision, “he said.

“I have already submitted my views so that this kind of incident (cross-border crime) can be addressed,” he said. 

He said to ensure Sabah is in good standing, the East Coast should be equipped with adequate equipment and intelligence teams.

Asked if the restructuring would have an impact on security as it involved cost cutting, Shafie said if proper equipment was placed in Sabah it would be much better.

He said the Esscom restructuring would still be carried out and sooner the better. When asked on a report from the Philippines that Sabah was facing internal threats, Mohd Shafie said that if they (Philippines) were able to identify and provide information to the security forces in Sabah, arrests could be made.

“It is better for us to work together because it is not only good for them but also for us to identify the threats that come from within,” he said.

He also called for cooperation of the public to be the eyes and ears of the government in helping to channel information to the security forces if there were security threats in their areas so that necessary action can be taken.



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