Kuala Krai: Potential outbreak of diseases and looting
Joint media statement by Loke Siew Fook and Liew Chin Tong in Kuala Krai on 2nd January 2015
We urge Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the Federal Government to mobilise the maximum number of civil and military personnel and assets, preferably via a declaration of emergency, to clean up Kuala Krai in the shortest possible time and to ensure adequate food is distributed to all victims at the quickest time.
We were devastated by the extent of destruction to Kuala Krai so much so that virtually everyone is a victim here. Electricity and water are only restored in very limited areas. Most people in Kuala Krai have survived without electricity and clean water supply for 10 days. Garbage is mostly not collected and flooded areas have not yet been cleaned. Stench of dead animals is commonplace.
We are deeply concerned about the possible outbreak of diseases and the consequential health disaster.
We were in Kuala Krai to deliver private donation of neccesities by Malaysians from all walks of life. But on site in Kuala Krai, we were made keenly aware that there are limits to private charity.
Shops and stalls are mostly closed either because of the floods or for fear of looting. Cash is on the thin already for many who are not well off and the flood wiped out disposable income for many. What concerned us is that very few shops are opened for business and even with cash, food stuff is not easy to come by.
Without the Government stepping in to ensure food and essential items are distributed to all in an orderly manner, and without the market forces of shops and stalls functioning properly, social unrest cannot be ruled out.
We call on Prime Minister Najib to do the following for Kuala Krai:
To request TNB to announce a timetable of resumption of electricity supply;
To declare a state of emergency for Kuala Krai;
To deploy at least 10,000 military personnels (from all the camps in Kelantan) to be involved in massive clean-up of Kuala Krai in the quickest possible time;
To ensure rationed food is supplied to all corners of Kuala Krai by the deployed personnel in the quickest possible time;
With the presence of the military and increased police presence, restore public order for businesses to operate again.
The twin-crises of health and supply in Kuala Krai cannot wait.
* Loke Siew Fook is DAP National Organising Secretary and Commander-in-Chief for DAP Flood Relief Operations
* Liew Chin Tong is DAP National Political Education Director and DAP Johor Chairman