SUBANG, Jan 2 – Four sub-centres for the collection of aid for flood victims went into operation today, two of them in Perak and one each in Kedah and Melaka.
This was announced by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein at the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) base here before flying off to Terengganu with Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof to have a first-hand look at the flood situation in Dungun.
Hishammuddin said the sub-centres were at 6th Battalion Royal Malay Regiment headquarters at the Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Camp in Jitra, Kedah; multipurpose hall of 3rd Division at Terendak Camp in Melaka; hall of 2nd Brigade staff headquarters in Ipoh, Perak and Piyuntinan hall of 2nd Battalion Royal Rangers Regiment at Syed Putra Camp, also in Ipoh.
“These sub-centres are handled by the army headquarters, brigades and units in the states or areas concerned. They operate round the clock,” he told reporters. Hishammuddin also said that the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) had carried out 278 sorties under the ‘Ops Murni’ operation to held the flood victims as of yesterday.
More than 5,000 MAF personnel had been deployed in the operation, he said. He also said that 2,165 tonnes of the 2,385 tonnes of goods donated by the people at the Subang RMAF base flood aid collection centre had been distributed to the flood-hit areas. “This means, more than 90 per cent of the goods have been distributed to the flood victims,” he said.
Hishammuddin also said that the MAF and the Public Works Department would work together to repair flood-damaged roads and bridges, and that they had identified one road and two bridges so far for the purpose. “The road links Kampung Jongok Batu to Kampung Pasir Raja in Dungun, Terengganu, the bridges are over Sungai Stelu in Gua Musang, Kelantan, and over Sungai Tanum in Lipis, Pahang,” he said.
Fadillah, meanwhile, said that all flood-damaged federal roads in the state were passable for traffic, even if only one lane could be used on some of the roads. “The East-West Highway linking the east and west coasts has yet to be opened to traffic for safety reasons. The road is only accessible for light vehicles on aid missions,” he said.
He said the JKR and MAF would look for short-term solutions to enable the movement of people for their daily activities. He also said that the JKR was always ready to help the MAF send aid supplies by road to flood-hit areas. “Yesterday, we sent 10 lorries (of supplies) and today, eight lorries. Also, in every state and district, the JKR helps with clean-up work,” he said.