KUCHING: Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah wants an immediate police probe into an attempted abduction at a primary school hostel in Debak, Betong on Wednesday night.
According to him, the incident happened around 8.45pm when the victim, a Year 5 boy of SK Suri, was brushing his teeth in the bathroom.
He said an armed intruder suddenly appeared and grabbed hold of the boy before attempting to drag him out.
The boy, however, shouted to his hostel mates for help which prompted the intruder to let go and escape in a white four-wheel drive vehicle waiting outside.
“I am very concerned and I want police to investigate the case. This is the first time such an alarming incident has happened. As far as I can remember, this sort of thing has never happened in Betong,” Uggah said when met, while revealing that a police report over the matter has been lodged in Debak.
He also urged the education ministry and school authorities to beef up security measures, particularly at rural schools.
“I also call upon headmasters and teachers to pay special attention to the security of the school especially at night,” he added.
Meanwhile, SK Suri parent-teacher association chairman Stephen Lamkop when contacted said he was making his way to the school for an urgent meeting with the teachers to discuss the attempted abduction.
Following the emergency meeting, he disclosed that the school has decided that parents, teachers, wardens and hostel supervisors will sleep in the same hostel to give a sense of security to the pupils.
“Effective tonight (yesterday), we will gather the children to sleep together in one hostel block along with the teachers, wardens and supervisors. We hope the parents will do so as well because we want the children to feel safe,” he said.
Stephen also said they will appeal to the education department to build toilets and washroom within the hostel compound for the safety of the children. According to him, the intruder entered the school compound via a damaged section of the school’s perimeter fence.
“We will appeal to Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah to help us repair the fence immediately, and we also hope the police will increase patrols in the area,” he said, adding the pupils of SK Suri are still traumatised following the attempted abduction.