Forward Operation Base to be introduced at Sabah east coast
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman said this was one of the additional steps to strengthen security in Eastern Sabah Safety Zone (Esszone), which would be conducted in phases.
“The structure would be similar to an oil exploration platform which would be contributed by companies like Petronas.
“FOB will function to monitor and trace enemies while providing logistics support facility for swift actions.
“It will be equipped with interceptor boat, detection radar and the quick ability to prevent enemies from leaving the country’s waters if they have committed crimes in our area,” he said in a statement.
This was one of the short, medium and long-term measures the government had announced following the recent series of kidnappings at Sabah’s east coast.
Musa said the cooperation between Malaysia and the Philippines in coordinated patrolling such as Op PHIMAL (Philippine-Malaysia Coordinated Patrol), which had stopped since 2008, must be re-activated under Border Patrol Coordinating Group (BPCG) frame.
“This collaboration must be re-activated through Joint Committee on Border Cooperation (JCBC) under the Joint Commission Meeting (JCM).
“By re-activating this mechanism, it would strengthen cooperation between the two countries in security aspects.
“Our bilateral cooperation is being started in a smaller segment, but Malaysia must play a dominant role in becoming an annual host to ensure its success,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for designated routes at Sabah’s waters will be effective from June 1 this year.
Musa said the SOP had been approved during the State Security Council meeting he chaired yesterday.
The State government last week has declared the designated routes along Sabah’s coastal, where foreign vessel movements and entry into Sabah are via the ports of Tawau, Semporna, Lahad Datu, Sandakan, Kudat, Kota Kinabalu and Labuan only.
“Among other regulations under the procedure (SOP) are that vessels must be within 1 nautical mile from the median line of the Designated Route, the vessels must have enough lighting to show their silhouette at night and they must use point of entry coordinates when coming in and out of the Designated Route,” said Musa.
The Hanruh concept, which is integrated security effort that promotes active roles from non-military community members, will also be implemented in Esszone area to increase awareness and patriotism among the locals.
On Control Area which was mentioned as one of the drastic measures, he said the details must be determined by the police including the issuance of passes or permits for locals within the control area.
“To ensure the monitoring of residents’ movement at high risk areas in Esszone, there is a need to enforce the Public Order (Preservation) Act 1958, 296 Act and other existing laws.
“Thus if there are threats or incidents that could jeapordise security within Esszone, the Prohibited Area Order could be enforced legally,” Musa elaborated.
Efforts will also go towards curbing all illegal activities at the maritime area in Esszone.
“All information and records will be coordinated by Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) through related agencies, which lead to profiling of all sea activities such as tourism, fisheries, seaweed and aquaculture, so we could plan more efficient security measures.
“All vessels, including pump boats which are categorised as Non-Convention Sized Ships (NCSS) must be recorded by Esscom for the purpose of identifying ownership and its movements; however this does not mean we endorse the use of pumpboats,” he added.
source: New Straits Times
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