TEMERLOH: The Government has never compromised on matters concerning national security and had always acted swiftly to overcome problems on border infiltration especially those involving internal elements.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said on Saturday that some of the action taken had shocked the country, but it had to be done to resolve the problem in a holistic manner.
"What was done by the Government through the announcement by the Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa was something that shocked the nation but it had to be done...not due to the fault of the individual who is the head (of the agency concerned).
"The responsibility given to us is carried out not because of the position or individual, but we must look at the aspects of security and cross-border crime to ensure the wellbeing of the people and public peace," he said.
Ahmad Zahid said this in his speech at the Hari Raya Aidilfitri gathering organised by the Temerloh Umno division at Dataran Lanchang today, which was also attended by the Temerloh Umno division head Datuk Seri Mohd Sharkar Shamsuddin.
On Friday, Ali announced a reshuffle of several positions in the government departments including the appointment of the Deputy Chief Commissioner (Prevention) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali as the Director-General of Immigration effective on Monday.
The appointment was to replace Datuk Seri Sakib Kusmi who has been moved to the Public Service Department.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Home Minister, said Malaysians were fortunate because they could celebrate the various festivals in a calm and comfortable manner as they had a government that placed security as key to the country's wellbeing.
"We celebrate Aidilfitri to the extent that we overshoot the month of Syawal...more than what is stated in the Muslim calendar. But look at what is happening in the other Muslim countries, some of the people there cannot celebrate as happily as we do because of the fear on security.
"I also remind myself constantly not to treat the aspect of security lightly because the price is too great to pay," he added.
Ahmad Zahid said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was also deeply concerned about security aspects to the extent that issues on the matter were discussed in detail at the Umno Supreme Council and Cabinet meetings.
Furthermore, Najib himself had held the portfolio as Defence Minister, which made him feel that such aspects must be given priority for the comfort of the people, he added.
In this regard, Ahmad Zahid said the government had taken appropriate action to protect the entry points into the country and the national waters such as implementing the blue ocean strategy involving the Marine Operations Force (MOF), Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) and the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN).
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Umno vice president, urged the party lineup to strive in ensuring that the Barisan regained the Temerloh Parliamentary seat in the next general election.
At the function, he handed over haj necessities to 141 pilgrims from Temerloh.- Bernama