Monday February 18, 2013
Need for effective maritime enforcement
I REFER to your report “Abu Sayyaf strikes fear among villages" (The Star, Feb 16).
Reading the first hand account quoting farmer Ben Hamid about the landing of the armed Filipino militants on our sovereign shore raises more questions than answers on the capabilities and effectiveness of our maritime enforcement agencies.
As quoted in your article that the armed militants landed on Feb 9 and “...the group stayed on and more armed men started landing over the next few days”, it clearly shows that there has been continuous violation of our sovereign territory the following days.
I feel that it is the biggest disgrace to our Maritime Enforcement Agencies and that someone must be brave enough to take responsibility for the incidents.
Just on Feb 6, the deputy director-general of MMEA/APMM proudly boasted that Maritime crimes has been greatly reduced to 3% in 2012 (since it’s establishment in 2006) due to effectiveness and constant patrolling of Malaysian maritime waters by his agency.
My question is how could an efficient and very highly capable sole Maritime Agency overlook multiple landings of such a large number of armed militants on our sovereign soil.
I think the agency’s solution and answer to overcome this incident again is to buy more fast strike patrol boats, helicopters, night vision binoculars, build more bases and employ more manpower.