1:47 pm - Saturday November 25, 2017

More manpower needed for Sarawak to fight drug-related activities in the state

DADAH

MO,9/11/2017, PETRA JAYA: Sarawak needs more manpower for the Narcotics Criminal Investigation Department (NCID) to fight against drug-related activities in the state. State Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah said Sarawak was the biggest state in the country, yet there were only 306 personnel comprising 61 officers and 245 policemen in the department.

A total of 14 district police stations in Lundu, Belaga, Marudi, Julau, Kanowit, Lubok Antu, Meradong, Saratok, Simunjan, Song, Tatau, Matu, Daro and Dalat did not have NCID. “Thus, I would say the number of manpower (from NCID) to combat drug issue in the state is insufficient. Although the state has a quota of 343 personnel in NCID, including 72 officers and 270 policemen, not all the posts have been filled,” she said.

Fatimah said the Public Services Department (JPA) had frozen new recruitment until 2019. “So it’s hoped that JPA can give us a special consideration to open recruitment for more NCID personnel to fill up the vacancies based on the quota allocated to Sarawak,” she said. Fatimah was replying a question raised by Dennis Ngau (BN-Telang Usan) at the second session of the 18th Sarawak Legislative Assembly sitting here, on whether the state had enough NCID manpower to address the drug issue thoroughly.

The government, she said, was aware that drug abuse among youth had become worrying as drug dealers were targeting students. Therefore, various initiatives had been carried out to educate the community, especially the younger generation. For this year, Fatimah said, a total of 182 secondary schools were selected to undergo Sayang Hidup Elaine Derita Selamanya (SHIELDS) by the state’s National Anti-Drug Agency (AADK).

Meanwhile, 89 awareness programmes were held, involving 9,556 participants from all ages, including students, parents and community leaders. “We also did not neglect the rural community where 108 prevention programmes were held in Mukah, Betong, Sri Aman as well as Miri, Sarikei and Bintulu,” she said.

In the first nine months of the year, Fatimah said, six drug syndicates have been foiled by the police in the state and 401 people were arrested for drug trafficking and 1,352 for drug possession.

–NSTP

Filed in: Dari Bumi Kenyalang, Nasional, Topik Pilihan

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