Sabah floods: Over 2,700 victims displaced in three districts


KOTA KINABALU: The number of flood victims housed at relief centres in three districts on Friday (May 21) continues to increase despite favourable weather since Thursday (May 20).

As of 8pm Friday (May 21), 2,789 victims have been relocated to 23 shelters in Tenom (19), Beaufort (two) and Putatan (two).

Tenom was the hardest hit and continues to register more flood victims, where the Dewan Sri Ontoros shelter recorded the highest number of victims at 476 currently, said the Civil Defence Force.

Checks in Tenom found that rain only started around 5pm at the district, and it has been cloudy since Thursday.

Previously, Keningau and Sipitang districts were also hit by floods following continuous downpour earlier this week.

In a statement, Deputy Chief Minister cum State Public Works Minister Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin (pic) urged all Public Works Department district engineers, especially at flood-prone areas, to monitor the status of infrastructures for possible damage.

He said it was likely that massive floods could bring problems like landslides, damaged bridges with road links cut off, taking note of the flood disaster that hit several districts this week.

He said it was possible that what happened in Pitas floods earlier this year – where road connectivities were cut off causing difficulties for villagers – could be experienced in any of these other districts.

Bung Moktar cautioned victims to follow directives when asked to be relocated, and adhere to the Covid-19 protocols at the relief centres.

Meanwhile, Sabah Urban Development Corporation (SUDC) chairman Jamawi Jaafar who was on the ground in Tenom, urged non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and the corporate sector in this state to come forward and help the affected flood victims in that district.

The former Kemabong assemblyman said a clean water supply will be needed, as the two water treatment plants in Tenom district and Kemabong sub-district are not operational due to being flooded.

Any assistance can be channelled to the district flood operation control centre (PKOB) at the Tenom district office, to be coordinated and distributed to the victims.

The former Tenom Umno Youth chief admitted that while he was used to flood disasters in the district, the flood incident this time was worse as some roads saw water level rising up to 10 feet, causing difficulty in delivering assistance to those in the shelters.

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