Saturday, November 3, 2007


In just half an hour, police here detained two suspects who broke into a house at Taman Kendara, thanks to the quick action of the house owner and police.
City Police Chief, ACP Ahmad Sofi Zakaria, said the 42-year-old lorry driver quickly alerted the police, providing them with the registration number of the suspects’ car after seeing them dashing out from his house.
The lorry driver was said to have just finished his shift on Oct 25 and got home at about 9. 3Oam when he noticed the men rushing out of the house and escaping in a Proton Iswara car.
“The man stayed calm, taking down the necessary information and alerted the police immediately,” he said.
“Because he did not panic and was table to take down the (registration) number, we were immediately able to inform our patrol units to be on the lookout for the vehicle,” said Ahmad.
He said police located the car at Sinsuran here about 30 minutes later and detained two local men, both in their 50s, and recovered several jewellery items and cash from the suspects.
In an unrelated case, two locals aged 29 and 27 were detained for robbing an 18-year-old local college student of his cellphone and RM25 cash at Likas on Oct21.
Ahmad said the student was waiting .for a bus near a secondary school in the area at around 7.2Opm when he was approached by four men, one armed with a screwdriver.
“It was through a public tip-off that we managed to detain the two suspects at Mile 5, Likas and seized a Kancil car from them,” he said.
Police are still looking for the remaining accomplices.
In another incident, a teenage robbery suspect smashed a window of a minibus in his desperate bid to evade arrest.
The 18-year-old youth and his 15- year-old accomplice, both former convicts, had chartered the bus, believed with the money they took from another 18-year-old and his younger brother earlier near Menggatal town on Oct 20, said Ahmad.
On seeing police intercepting the busat Kampung Tebobon in Menggatal at around 6.3Opm, the youth shattered the glass window and fled.
“The police personnel from the city crime prevention unit gave chase and apprehended him soon after,” he said, adding that the younger suspect was too scared and made no attempt to escape.
Initial investigation revealed that the suspects had robbed the victims of their cellphone and RM200 with a pair of scissors at about 1.45pm.
Ahmad said police believe they have solved at least three robberies involving the same modus operandi with scissors and one break-in in Menggatal.
He said police also seized two mobile phones, a pair of scissors and heaps of SIM cards from the suspects’ bag.
Meanwhile, Penampang police detained 16 illegal immigrants in a predawn operation in Putatan and Petagas on Friday.
District Police Chief DSP Madang Usat said the three-hour operation was led by District Traffic and Public Order head, Chief Inspector Edward Kondokor, and involved 16 policemen and 10 Rela members.


Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations (Fomca) yesterday asked the people to be prepared to face rising prices of goods following an increase in the prices of basic items such as wheat and petrol in the world market. Its adviser, Prof Datuk Hamdan Adnan, said it was important for the consumers to prepare themselves mentally and by way of their spending to face the inevitable rising prices of essential goods next year.
“This is because the price of petrol has risen to almost double that when the fuel price in the country was reviewed more than a year ago,” he said in a statement following the rise of world oil price to US$100 a barrel.
“The people have to be thankful to the Government for continuing to subsidise the fuel and ensuring no price hike of the commodity this year,” he said.
Prof Hamdan said, however, he did not think that the Government could accommodate the existing price next year in view of the steep rise in the world oil price. He said the rise in the price of fuel would have an effect on the cost of transportation but added that Fomca hoped the Government could ensure that any rise in the prices of essential goods and public transportation fares would be within the means of consumers.
Elaborating on the need for consumers to be prepared for a price hike, he said the people should resort to measures such as eating out less and bringing meals from the home to the office or workplace. On the rise in the price of a loaf of bread following the rise in the price of wheat, Prof Hamdan urged the Government to enforce regulations on the existing standard loaf in accordance with the Food Act.
“Bread manufacturers should be subjected to a quota on the making of the standard loaf besides producing the more expensive high- fibre bread,” he said.
On complaints by the people on the rise in the price of “roti canai” and its varying sizes, he said the authorities and traders should discuss and come up with regulations on standard roti canai to determine the ingredients and weight as it has become a routine food. Prof Hamdan also suggested that the Government revive the Green Book programme, of the people cultivating their own vegetables, as a measure to reduce the impact of rising prices of essential goods.


Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) is confident of supplying electricity to’90 per cent of rural people in the State by the year 2010, compared to only 67 per cent presently.
Its Managing Director Baharin Din, in disclosing this yesterday, explained that one of the contributing factors that hamper the effort to provide electricity to these areas is the distribution problem faced by those appointed to channel electricity supply to the houses.
“We have set up generators in each area and it is up to the appointed parties to do the distribution of electricity supply, where currently some are enjoying the utility while others have yet to get it,” he said. “This is one of the reasons why a big portion of the rural folks have yet to get electricity supply,” he said during the SESB Raya Open House at the Dewan Karamunsing, yesterday.
Also present were Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) Chairman Tan Sri Leo Moggie, Mayor Datuk lliyas Ibrahim and SESB Senior Corporate Communication Manager Chenderamata Sinteh.
Asked about the construction of the coal-fired electricity plant at Silam, Lahad Datu, which is expected to be completed soon, Baharin explained that it would be able to generate 300 megawatts of electricity.
He said once the project is completed in 2011, it would be able to supply power to over 100,000 people in the East Coast which covers Sandakan, Tawau, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Kunak.
For a start, the RM1.2 billion plant would be able to generate 40 megawatts of electricity supply, starting 2010, he added
‘Baharin said they have met the Environmental Impact Assessment at (EIA) requirements concerning the construction of the plant.
He is confident that the power plant will be able to benefit the people, particularly economically, apart from solving the frequent power disruptions in Sabah.
In addition, he said, the Sabah Grid in Kolopis, Penampang, will be launched on Nov 26.
“We have managed to reduce by 50 per cent the power disruptions in the State,” he said, adding that as at yesterday,, SESB had generated 624.9 megawatts throughout Sabah, which is an increase of 3O percent compared to only 500 megawatts during the same period last year.


A total of 121 Chinese independent and mission schools yesterday received grants amounting to RM7,879,490 from the Government, which was an increase from last year’s allocation of RM5,445,000.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Haji Aman, who presented the assistance, said that in February last year, the State Government decided to extend early grants for schools that are deemed to be in need of financial assistance.
“At the same time, the State Government also handed out financial assistance to schools in the interior that were badly affected by the floods last year,” he said at the presentation of the grants at Le Meridien Hotel here, yesterday.
Also present were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Joseph Pairin Kitingan, several cabinet ministers and assistant ministers.
Musa, who is also Finance Minister, said the provision of the yearly allocations as well as the early grants and disaster relief clearly reflects the Barisan Nasional (BN) Government’s commitment towards helping these schools as part of the overall development of education in the State.
“In this respect, the State Government will within its capacity, continue to support schools in its effort to create educational excellence,” he added.
Musa said the State Government will do its level best to assist schools towards raising the level of education among the people, especially those from the rural areas and the underprivileged.
He said this is very much in line with the emphasis on education under the Ninth Malaysia Plan (9-MP), which is clearly reflected in the huge allocation given to Sabah by the Federal Government.
He said the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, in launching the Educational Development Action Plan earlier this year, stated that the generation of students produced today must not only be literate but also intellectually capable.
“Intellectually capable students will make up the pool of human capital required by the nation to face an ever increasing competitive world,” he added.
In view of this, Musa said, all quarters involved in the educational development programme should focus on nurturing students with the objective of developing quality human capital, which is one of the major thrusts of the national mission and an important agenda in achieving the successful implementation of the 9MP.
“With this in mind, I hope that educational institutions including Chinese independent schools will tailor their teaching methods and curriculum towards this education direction.”
Musa said the State Government will also be allocating RM1O.48 million to Christian organizations and temples in Sabah, an increase from last year’s RM9.66 million.
“I understand that 15 Christian organizations and 39 Chinese temples as well as one Hindu and one Sikh temple will receive their respective allocations,” he added.
He said the provision of these allocations shows the State Government’s commitment to uphold religious freedom and encourage religious and spiritual development of the people irrespective of their race and belief.
“Houses of worship, including churches and temples. will continue to get State Government’s support,” he added.
He said churches and temples have a role to play in complementing the Government’s efforts in creating a moral and caring society and curbing social ills such as drug abuse and other criminal activities.