IPOH, March 15 — The Civil Defence Force (APM) has been instructed to deploy volunteer personnel to help out with post-flood relief missions in areas affected by the recent floods.
APM Chief Commissioner Aminurrahim Mohamed said the order was issued by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah Affairs, Sarawak, and Special Functions) to replace 180 volunteer officers sent from other states.
“Overall, there are more than 10,000 registered volunteer members who are still active. In Johor alone, we have over 1,200 members involved and working with the Southern Volunteers team.
“The volunteer movement in Johor is really impressive. Imagine when we have 40,000 flood victims and we have to work without their involvement. I think even if all the agencies were to work together we won’t be able to cope. There need to be volunteers,” he said.
Aminurrahim was speaking to the media after attending a Perak APM gathering in conjunction with the 2023 Civil Defence Month celebration here today.
For the post-flood mission in Johor, APM is waiting for the go-ahead to deploy volunteers because the state has a committee that will assess all needs.
Meanwhile, APM has targeted all states to be involved in its Kampung Siaga 221 programme in an effort to boost the level of resident preparedness in the event of disasters.
“In Perak, we launched it on March 11 and it was officiated by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (Mosti) in Trolak Pekan. We want to train the community so that they can provide feedback without the need to wait for the security agencies.
“We aim to bring the programme to disaster and emergency hotspots susceptible to the damage of public properties,” he said.
Separately, Aminurrahim urged the relevant parties to review APM’s application to join the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (Smart).
“In the 1990s, APM was offered to join Smart but we did not have many permanent positions then and so we had to reject the offer.
“Last year, together, with the Special Functions Minister, we proposed for APM to be involved in the team. We are aware that it is subject to the National Security Council’s decision (MKN) to assess the need to add members or provide diversity in Smart,” he said.