UPDATED @ 11:51:13 PM 23-03-2013
KUALA LUMPUR, March 23 – A Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) will be formed to investigate the Sulu incursion in Lahad Datu, Sabah, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein confirmed today.
According to a report on The Star Online, the minister (picture) said details of the RCI would only be revealed during a press conference by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Monday.
°In the meantime, my ministry has been doing the necessary groundwork, such as identifying five Customs, Immigration and Customs (CIQ) complexes and seven new police stations to be built in areas including Bum Bum, Gaya and Pulai Banggi,” Hishammuddin was quoted telling reporters in Kluang, Johor, today.
The minister added that Malaysia’s Special Branch has been working closely with the Philippine National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) on the exchange of intelligence regarding the armed incrusion.
The invasion for the 235-strong group of militants from southern Philippines was a wake-up call for Malaysia, Hishammuddin said, according to The Star.
“This is a way for us to empower and strengthen our agencies that may be weak in certain areas based on new challenges that the country faces,” he was quoted saying.
Followers of the self-styled Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III landed in Lahad Datu on February 9 to lay the sultanate’s centuries-old claim over Sabah, the north Borneo territory that was gifted by the Brunei Sultan to the Sulu Sultan in the 17th century.
Earlier today, deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said security forces here have successfully crippled the movements of the Sulu gunmen after capturing its military commander in Semporna this morning.
According to Bernama, the DIGP said the man, in his 40s, was detained with his wife at a swampy area at 1.30am after a tip-off.
“The local co-ordinator has been identified as the individual who made arrangements for food and drinks, accommodation, transportation and medicine for the terrorists since the early part of the intrusion.
“With the capture of the commander and a local stooge of the terrorists, I am confident the terrorist group is now crippled,” he was quoted telling a press conference in Lahad Datu.
To date, 63 Sulu gunmen have fallen at the hands of local security forces, while 408 have been arrested.
Ten Malaysians have also been killed during separate skirmishes since March 1, including eight policemen and two soldiers.
~ The Malaysian Insider