Armed forces enlisted to deliver food, essential supplies to rural areas in Sarawak and Sabah

File photo of Ismail Sabri addressing a press conference on Covid-19.

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By Karen Bong

KUCHING, March 31: The Cabinet meeting on Covid-19 today has decided to deploy the Armed Forces’ assets to deliver food and other essential supplies to rural areas in Sarawak and Sabah.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob assured rural communities in Sarawak and Sabah hard to reach logistically that their worries and needs will be taken care of.

“We received complaints from residents in longhouses for instance, (that) sometimes (food and essential supplies) cannot be delivered to them.

“The (Cabinet) meeting has decided and agreed that the Armed Forces will use their assets such as helicopters and others to deliver products, food stuffs and basic necessities to rural areas in Sabah and Sarawak,” he told a press conference at Putrajaya today.

Ismail Sabri urged the rural communities in the two Borneo States not to worry as the federal government was aware of their plights and the challenges faced by them.

“As such, rakyat in rural areas of Sabah and Sarawak don’t have to be worried because the government will always ensure that food supplies and other (stuffs) are sufficient for them,” he said.

On worries whether the Movement Control Order (MCO) will be continued and extended to phase three and four stages, Ismail Sabri reminded that only the discipline of people will ensure that the MCO can be lifted.

“Many people have been questioning if the MCO will continue to be implemented to phase three and four and would affect the Ramadan (fasting) period and Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebration.

“I know all Malaysians want to return to their normal life. If we continue to abide by the restrictions and SOP (standard operation procedures) implemented by the government, I believe our fear of continuing MCO can be solved,” he added.

The second phase of the MCO which will see enhanced measures and stricter rules to be enforced by the authorities will kick in tomorrow (April 1).

The stricter rules include limiting the operational hours of supermarkets or any premises that sells essential items, public transport, petrol stations, restaurants, home food delivery as well as for taxi and e-hailing services. — DayakDaily