PUTRAJAYA, 16 Dec 2008: Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar said it was unfair to accuse the rescue teams, including police, of stealing the Bukit Antarabangsa landslide victims’ belongings as it could tarnish their image.
He said the teams involved in the rescue operation had sacrificed their time and energy to save the landslide victims, as such their effort should be appreciated as this was made in a very difficult situation.
“Carrying out the task under pressure is not easy, but the rescue teams proved their capability during the operation.
“They tried their best to prevent crime and control the surrounding situation while helping out the victims. They had also put their lives in danger due to the possibility of more landslips occurring.
“So, an appreciation for their services is in order,” he said after the presentation of Quality Awards of the National Anti-Drugs Agency, here, today.
Syed Hamid was asked to comment on allegations that a few members of the rescue teams, including police personnel, had stolen some belongings of the landslide victims.
He said the theft victims should have lodged police reports for investigations to be carried out.
“Although we were informed about the thefts, these could also have been committed by people who posed as rescue workers as there were many onlookers at the landslide scene,” he added. — Bernama