KOTA KINABALU: Police will focus on efforts to eradicate drug smuggling and trafficking activities in water villages, especially in Sabah and Sarawak. Narcotic Crime Investigation Department Director Datuk Noor Rashid Ibrahim said it is aimed at busting small-time drug dealers who are actively operating in these areas.
"There are a number of water villages in the State here and these are the hot spot locations, even in Brunei Darussalam, that we have identified to address the problem, effectively.
"These small-time dealers have the upper hand in the water villages as they are very familiar with the alleys and routes which enable them to easily escape police and arrest during our raids.
"In fact, they even know how to run away from police using the furthest corners of the roads in the area," he said, adding the police will initially use their own approaches before conducting integrated operations with other law enforcement.
Noor Rashid said this at a press conference after witnessing a police parade to mark the completion of police basic training for constables in Kepayan here, Saturday.
A total of 247 police personnel completed the basic training to become policemen. Also present were Sabah Police Management Department head, SAC Noor Azam Jamaludin and Kota Kinabalu Police Training Centre (Pulapol) Commandant, Supt. Mohd Azhar Hamin.
Hazzuan Tumiran who has a diploma in mechanical engineering was selected as the overall best trainee while the best academic trainee award went to Raymond Thanny Anak Ninkan who has a degree in Business Management from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) and Muhammad Syahir Mohammad Khamis emerged as the best trainee for outdoor training category.
Noor Rashid said the police is focussing on eliminating drug trafficking activities in these areas so as to reduce demand as well as buyers.
"We can address this social problem provided the public render full cooperation in channeling vital information and tip-offs in regards to the illegal activities.
"As a matter of fact, two-way communication between us and the society is the key to police success in making drug busts," he said.
To a question, he said drug trafficking activities by the small-time dealers are significant and a problem to the society, however, it is still under control.
On latest police statistics on drug seizure and arrests, Noor Rashid, who did not elaborate, said the police recorded an increase of six per cent in this aspect this year.
He said cooperation from Customs, Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has enabled the police to cripple many drug smuggling attempts, especially through the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).
On latest tactics used by drug smugglers, he said this includes bringing in the substance by passing through roads from Thailand including near the borders at Bukit Kayu Hitam and Rantau Panjang in Kelantan.
On Friday, Noor Rashid said a Nigerian who came as a student was arrested for attempting to create a drug network not only in Kuala Lumpur, but also in other states in the peninsula. (DE)