SIBU: Bumimas Camp, which was built last year at a cost of more than RM10 million, is among the best National Service Training Programme (NSTP) camps in the country.
Deputy Minister of Defence Datuk Dr Abdul Latif Ahmad said the camp, which sits on a piece of land spanning 45 acres in Sibu Jaya, was presently home to 423 trainees from throughout the state and Kuala Lumpur.
“I have visited all 87 NSTP camps throughout the nation, and this camp is among the best,” he said during a working visit to the camp last Saturday.
He was accompanied by Nangka assemblyman Dr Annuar Rapaee, Commander of 9 Brigade Infantry Brigadier-General Datuk Stephen Mundaw and Bumimas camp operator Ho Siew Yen.
Latif said NSTP’s emphasis was on nation-building and to inculcate in all trainees a love for the country.
“Through the national module, trainees get to understand how Malaysia is governed and managed.”
On a related matter, Latif told reporters that water-based training activities at all NSTP camps were still suspended until further notice.
The suspension directive was issued by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi on March 31 following the death of a trainee at an NSTP camp in Terkok, Perak, on Mar 12. The victim was suspected to have succumbed to Leptospirosis disease.
Latif said priority would always be placed on health and safety at all camps in the interest of the trainees.
“If death does occur, it can’t be avoidable because the probability of them (trainees) meeting their fate while undergoing training in the camp is much lower than if they were outside the camp.”
On the incident at NSTP Terkok camp, he said he would not be surprised if the unfortunate incident was manipulated by the Opposition for political mileage.
“I won’t be surprised if the opposition parties twist the news. We are transparent for there is nothing to hide in matters relating to NSTP camp.”
Among the highlights of his visit was the performance of dances such as ‘Ngajat’ and ‘poco-poco’.