KOTA KINABALU: Assistant Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Edward Yong Oui Fah has urged the Fire and Rescue Services Department to set up a station at Pulau Gaya in view of the fire that burned down two blocks of school buildings at SMK Pulau Gaya here on Thursday.
The fire caused an estimated loss of at least RM700,000 including education materials, textbooks, and machines for Living Skills workshop.
He said there are about 6,000 residents in Kg Pulau Gaya but there are no fire rescue facilities there.
“The villagers called the Fire Department at around 7pm, and the fire personnel arrived at 9pm.
“We understand there is an accessibility problem and we cannot blame it on anyone,” he said in an interview after inspecting the damage at Pulau Gaya here yesterday.
Residents at Pulau Gaya worked for nearly two hours to extinguish the flames using pails of sea water.
Yong also called on the Education Department to provide an allocation as soon as possible to rebuild the damaged blocks.
“The incident was unfortunate, but the most important thing is that no students or residents were injured in the blaze.”
Students sitting for the Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) and Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examinations next week and in November respectively will not be affected as they can still sit for their examinations in the school hall.
Yong further pledged to provide assistance to the school, particularly in terms of education equipment, books and computers.