KOTA KINABALU: A strong mandate from Sabahans would enable the Government to implement more measures to boost security in areas within the Eastern Sabah Safety Zone (Esszone), said Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishamuddin Tun Hussein on Sunday.
He said though much had been achieved over the past month to ensure that the Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) got off the ground with its launching by the Prime Minister on Saturday, more still needed to be done.
"It now depends on the mandate of the people on our plans. You give us a strong mandate, the more effective our measures will be.
"It all about trustworthiness, a key word in the Barisan Nasional manifesto. The bigger the mandate, the more we can to resolve this problem,'' Hishamuddin added.
The Government had announced the establishment of the Esszone spanning 10 districts from Kudat to Tawau under the Esscom following the Sulu gunmen intrusion in Lahad Datu in February.
Najib said among the measures to improve security within the 1,450km long Esszone were boosting the intelligence gathering capabilities of security forces as well as intercepting any intruders. To a question about how the increased security measures could impact on trading activity between Southern Philippines and Sabah, Hishamuddin said the days of "business as usual" were over.
"It cannot be business as usual after what the nation went through for the past month," he said in adding that traders as well as those crossing borders should go through security checks with the new customs, immigration and quarantine centres (CIQs) in the east coast.
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