Published on: Thursday, August 08, 2019
Kota Kinabalu: THE State Government is considering using drones for security surveillance in the State’s waters, especially in the East Coast.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said the use of drones is the latest approach to monitor the traffic flow of boats on Sabah’s waters without using aircraft.
“Drone is a good system and is one of the initiatives that the government is working on,” he said during the question and answer at the State Legislative Assembly sitting, here, Wednesday.
He also said the government would also intensify the use of radar surveillance in the East Coast.
“The State’s borders are wide. As such, it is not easy if we monitor them by relying on the placement of security personnel along the borders.”
Earlier, Shafie said the proposal to move Lok Kawi army camp from Kota Kinabalu to the east coast is to ensure better security surveillance and protection of the country’s sovereignty.
“Currently, the Lok Kawi camp has been turned into the fifth headquarters of the Infantry Division which means the army’s capabilities in the State has been elevated to Division level.
“At the same time, the previously-placed fifth brigade headquarters has been relocated to Kem Paradise in Kota Belud.
“To ensure the safety of the East Coast is well-maintained, a new brigade (13th Brigade Cendrawasih) has been established and placed at Lahad Datu.
“The army’s strength has also been enhanced with the establishment of a battalion of the Border Regiment in San Shui, Tawau,” he said.
However, due to the frequent occurrence of cross-border crime and security threats in hot spots in the East Coast, the State Government has proposed to the Federal Government to relocate Lok Kawi camp to the East Coast.
“The government has always put priority on efforts to improve national security by increasing the security asset based on current needs.
“For example, enhancing the capabilities of the surveillance equipment and sensors apart from streamlining the security procedures in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone).
“The government also proposed to place an air force base in the Esszone. These measures are taken to ensure cross-border crime activities can be easily monitored and handled effectively.”
However, he said, the additional security assets will depend on the approved allocation.
“To strengthen the security monitoring of the area, the government is conducting a study to re-structure the role and functions of the Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM),” he said. – Ricardo Unto