Sunday, September 20

Integrated wildlife protection ops to cover Sarawak, Sabah soon

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Mastor (front, centre), Khaw (on his left) and other GOF officers gather for a group photo with the Tiger Platoon new recruits. — Photo by Chimon Upon

KUCHING: The operation meant to protect wildlife in the country will soon focus on areas in Sarawak and Sabah, says Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order Department (KDNKA) deputy director Datuk Mastor Mohd Ariff.

He pointed out that the General Operations Force (GOF) personnel are now ready for the ‘Khazanah Integrated Ops’ here, although he did not reveal when it would be carried out.

“Although the operation has been launched nationwide, the areas covered are in Peninsular Malaysia for now.

“It’s only a matter of time for this operation to also be carried out in Sarawak and Sabah,” he told reporters after the closing ceremony of the Tiger Platoon recruitment course at GOF Batu Kawah Camp here yesterday.

The GOF’s Tiger Platoon is meant to strengthen the roles and responsibilities of the GOF in line with the current trend of security threats that the country is facing.

It is also meant to assist the relevant authorities in protecting the wildlife in Malaysia.

Its members would be mobilised to conduct patrols, track down suspects of wildlife-related offences, and carry out joint raids with other enforcement bodies.

“We are answering the call from the Malaysian government on protecting our wildlife. This is also the wish of Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as he is concerned about wildlife in the country,” said Mastor, who told reporters that he could not reveal the focus areas covered under the ‘Khazanah Integrated Ops’.

Earlier, Mastor congratulated the new recruits of the Tiger Platoon.

“As new recruits, you must understand the demands of this unit. You have been provided with the proper training and I hope you will always carry out your tasks diligently,” he said.

The Tiger Platoons from the Sarawak and Sabah brigades of the GOF are actively operating as the region’s main special operations forces, in view of both states being far from the GOF headquarters.

Every GOF nationwide, except the 19th Battalion, will be equipped with one Tiger Platoon unit.

GOF Sarawak commander SAC Datuk Khaw Kok Chin was also present at the event yesterday.