MMEA's capability proven - Muhyiddin

ON BOARD KM LANGKAWI, Feb 9 — The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has proven its capability in safeguarding the country”s maritime zone and search and rescue operations, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
He said checks conducted by the MMEA increased from 360 in 2006 to 4,497 (2007), 7,396 (2008) and 13,598 (2009) while until February this year, it recorded 1,239 checks.
"It was a marked increase since its formation five years ago,” he told reporters after witnessing the MMEA Chivalrous Maritime Exercise in Pulau Pintu Gedung waters off Port Klang today.
Muhyiddin, who was accompanied by Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister”s Department Datuk Ahmad Maslan, arrived by helicopter on KM Langkawi, the flagship of the exercise.
The 70-minute exercise entailed winching of people and goods by helicopter, conducting checks on vessels, crackdown on vessels by a special action squad and the use of Amfibia Bombardier aircraft in search and rescue operations.
A total of 1,424 personnel, 10 ships, five boats and four aircraft took part in the exercise, which started in Port Klang waters on Saturday and will end in Langkawi waters tomorrow.
Muhyiddin said the MMEA arrests increased from 173 in 2006 to 683 (2007), 679 (2008) and 1,028 (2009) while until Feb 5 this, 155 arrests were made.
He said lives saved by the MMEA increased from 55 in 2006 to 116 (2007), 97 (2008) and 207 (2009) while 22 were plucked to safety until Feb 5 this year.
"This attested how important is the MMEA”s role in safeguarding our waters and search and rescue operations,” he added.
He said the MMEA would be the sole maritime enforcement agency but several functions still came under the jurisdiction of the marine police and the Fisheries Department.
"We will hold a meeting to avoid overlapping of duties by transferring the required assets and personnel to the MMEA to enable the resources and manpower to be capitalised efficiently,” he added.
He said the MMEA assets would be beef-up in stages as RM600 million had been spent to procure assets in the past two years.
"In fact, Malaysia is the only maritime enforcement agency in the region having the Amfibia Bombardier aircraft,” he added.

Posted by YB Datuk Hj. Ahmad bin Hj. Maslan on 7:30 PM. Filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0

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