KOTA KINABALU, June 4, 2015:

The current red tape and procedural delays in equipment purchase to beef up security in the east coast of Sabah would be identified and done away with, said chief secretary to the government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa.

Speaking to reporters today, Ali said assets acquisition for Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) would be expedited, especially since there was a pressing need for such equipment in areas prone to cross-border crimes.

He said the matter had been “discussed and settled”, assuring that from now on, assets acquisition for Esscom would be done speedily.

“There should not be any problem now,” he said after meeting with Esscom commander Datuk Abdul Rashid Harun and high ranking officers from related federal agencies and ministries here.

Ali said this was to ensure security in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) was strengthened and maintained, noting that the meeting which lasted for about an hour focused primarily on assets acquisition-related issues.

“So, whatever needs to be done, related agencies will take necessary action. What we need now is to provide the assets and personnel for ensuring security within the Esszone.”

He said the equipment included logistical assets for both sea and land operations, namely boats and four wheel vehicles, as well as some 200 plus land and sea vehicles.

The purchase and deployment of the assets would be done as soon as possible, depending on availability of suppliers, he said.

Ali said allocations needed had been approved by the government, including the RM23 million recently set aside for acquiring additional immediate assets.

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