River authorities urged to take action against longhouse folks’ catch-me-if-you-can games

Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing

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KUCHING, June 11: Sarawak Rivers Board (SRB) has been urged to set up checkpoints on rivers during the Movement Control Order (MCO) to intercept the catch-me-if-you-can games the longhouse folks are playing in their speedboats and longboats.

Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing said while the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) is putting up roadblocks to check on vehicles running on land, the river travellers especially in Kapit town are left unguarded.

“PDRM is doing their jobs in carrying out road blocks into and out of Kapit town. They have been quite successful despite the various tricks the car users used to bypass the police road blocks.

“However, the worse culprits who come in and out of Kapit town with immunity are those who use speedboats and longboats. PDRM has no authority nor the means to stop these river users,” he said in a statement today.

Masing, who is also Baleh assemblyman, said during his working trip in Kapit in the past few days he found many river users who have been breaking the movement restriction standard operating procedure (SOP).

Thus, he urged SRB to also conduct similar checks on boat users and only let those with valid travelling reasons to continue with their journey.

“While in Kapit in the last three days, these river users have been breaking the rules of MCO (Movement Control Order), I found.

“The Ministry of Transport must, therefore, instruct SRB to be alert on these river travellers who aren’t following SDMC (State Disaster Management Committee) SOP. They can be the spreader of Covid-19 into Kapit and the surrounding longhouses,” he added. — DayakDaily