KUCHING: Sarawak, being a party to the formation of Malaysia, is asserting its position as a region.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg in asserting this, stressed that the formation of the Sarawak Coast Guard (SCG), would enforce laws exclusive to the region under the State Ordinance.

“Today, Sarawak is known as a region and no longer just a state.

“It is part of the region which formed Malaysia which includes Malaya and the region of Sabah.”

Abang Johari said SCG would enforce laws such as the State Fisheries Ordinance 2003, Forest Ordinance 2015, Wildlife Protection Ordinance 1998, National Parks and Nature Reserves Ordinance 1998 and Oil Mining Ordinance 1958.

“The establishment of SCG will bring many benefits in ensuring that our fishermen and our national parks are well guarded and not encroached by outsiders.

“This is our region, we must preserve and protect it,” he said when officiating at SCG’s launch at the Kuching Waterfront today.

Abang Johari presented the ceremonial baton to State Security and Enforcement Unit (UKPN) director Datuk Dr Chai Khin Chung for UKPN to assume administration of SCG.

SCG was first mooted in Oct 2019 to address various issues, including encroachment by foreign and local fishing vessels as well as loss of revenue from the state’s vast sea resources.

Last year, Abang Johari said the formation of SCG was made possible through amendments to the state’s Fishery Ordinance 2003.

Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing, in his DUN ministerial winding-up speech last year, said the unit would protect 788km of Sarawak’s coastline.