KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM) and Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCOM) are developing another five Coastal Surveillance System locations to expand its radar coverage in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZONE).
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim said ESSCOM was also developing five target hardening in five islands in the waters off Teluk Darvel, Lahad Datu and Semporna to beef up the high risk routes where kidnap for ransom and robbery at sea occurred.
“Currently the Coastal Surveillance System is located in eight locations that are operating from Pulau Banggi to Tinagat, Tawau.
“This inspection facilities are used during operations in ESSZONE and the control radar system is operated by ATM joint base (ATB) 2 in Tawau,” he said at the Dewan Rakyat sitting here today.
He was replying to Er Teck Hwa (DAP-Bakri) on the list of types, capacity and locations of the coastal surveillance radar found in ESSZONE besides purchased boats and vessels that are operating in the area involved besides the action, operation and investigation that had been conducted so far.
Shahidan said currently eight vessels and 69 boats are operating at any one time in the ESSZONE waters along high risk routes and hot spots being identified.
He said ESSCOM was also in the process of acquiring 92 speed boats of various types to increase visual presence and deterrence.
“This vessels will be acquired in stages with the acquisition to be completed fully by February 2016,” he said.
Meanwhile he said the establishment of ESSCOM had successfully prevented outside elements since the tragedy in Kampung Tanduo, Lahad Datu, with efforts being intensified to tackle cross border abduction in the areas identified.
“We have also conducted patrols and operations as well as inspection on 113,316 individuals in the areas suspected of kidnappings besides constantly conducting operations in most areas, involving various authorities,” he said. -BERNAMA