Nearly 50 pct increase in vehicle thefts in Kuching South, street crime also rising

Wee (front, sixth left) flanked by Ahsmon (fifth left) and Kho (fifth right), and others in a group photo taken during the dialogue session on June 8, 2023.

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KUCHING, June 13: A rise of nearly 50 per cent in vehicle thefts in the southern part of Kuching city from January to early June 2023 compared to the same period last year is alarming, as is the rise in street crime compared to the same period last year.

However, compared to the same period last year, house break-ins decreased by 39 per cent, and overall, the southern part of Kuching city saw a decrease in crime rate compared to the same period last year.

Based on reports of the crime division, the majority of crimes were committed by drug users with prior criminal or theft records.

According to a press statement from political secretary to the Sarawak Premier, Kho Teck Wan, community leaders and Kuching South City Council (MBKS) staff led by MBKS mayor Dato Wee Hong Seng had a dialogue session with Kuching police chief ACP Ahsmon Bajah at Kuching District Police Headquarters here on June 8.

The dialogue session arranged by Kho was attended by Kuching Division Police senior personnel and representatives from Bintawa, Sekama, Tabuan, Padungan, and Sungai Maong police stations, MBKS representatives, and community leaders from Kuching South.

Among the community leaders present were Penghulu Giam Ann Gee, Penghulu Alex Pui, Penghulu Tan Heng Kee, and Penghulu Daisy Chan.

Kho revealed the attendees were briefed on the latest crime indexes for Kuching City South and Ahsmon expressed the intention of police enforcement agencies to work together with citizens and community leaders to help collect intelligence, and increase citizens’ awareness of crime in order to reduce crime rates, especially concerning online commercial crimes.

“With that, MBKS mayor Datuk Wee offered to provide the city council’s facilities such as traffic wardens, CCTVs, and meeting rooms to the police to assist in their citizen awareness programmes and to help expedite the investigation of crime.

“The fruitful dialogue session resulted in the forming of a joint town hall session between the police and Kuching City Council.

“As MBKS will be launching its citizen townhall meeting at each zone in Kuching City South starting in the month of July, MBKS mayor offered to share the platform with the police,” Kho added.

According to the statement, Ahsmon promised to send police representatives to each townhall meeting organised by MBKS so an open dialogue can be established with Kuching South residents.

“Kuchingites are urged to pay attention to the announcement of (details for) townhall sessions in their respective areas, and take time to attend the joint townhall session organised by MBKS so they can receive the latest crime updates and useful information from the police and city council,” the statement read. — DayakDaily