PETALING JAYA, March 19 (Bernama) -- The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) Air Wing Peninsular Base in Subang, near here will be turned into a more effective centre to check cross-border criminal activities, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He said the existence of the base was important in facing increasingly sophisticated crime with their respective assets that could be used to jeopardise national peace and harmony.
"If we are not ahead of the criminals, the crime index will certainly rise. That is why the air unit is important and forms part of modern policing.
"This (air base) is also an important element besides training, existing assets such as the drone and closed-circuit cameras. Remember that incursions also occurred in the country's maritime coastal areas which must be coordinated with the action and commitment of the PDRM," said Ahmad Zahid, who is also the Home Minister, in his speech when launching the base today.
Also present were Deputy Home Minister Datuk Masir Kujat, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun and his deputy Tan Sri Noor Rashid Ibrahim.
Ahmad Zahid said what was being done by the government such as the opening of the air operations base and the Sendayan Air Base, Negeri Sembilan were ongoing efforts by the government in improving the assets and infrastructure of the country's security agencies in the fight against crime.
He said they also responded to the questions, allegations and negative perception raised by certain quarters against the government including the dissemination of fake news which was repeated every day.
"With the incident today and the opening of the Sendayan Air Base recently, all these allegations should be rejected by everyone.
"We should celebrate this success. Look around us. Seeing is believing," he said without elaborating the allegations.
Previously, it was widely reported in the social media that the Kuala Lumpur Air Base in Sungai Besai had to be closed down as the government had sold off the land to Chinese investors.
However, the allegation strayed with the opening of the Sendayan Air Base in Negeri Sembilan which began operations in January and the official launching of the PDRM Air Operations Unit Base in Subang, today proved that the move and resettlement of the nation's air base was part of the transformation efforts for the benefit of the security forces and country.
Meanwhile, commenting on the existing assets at the air base, Ahmad Zahid conceded that almost 30 per cent were new assets while the rest were old assets which required improvements, renewals and replacements if there were adequate budget and allocations.
The modern and sophisticated base covered an area of 40 acres with 17 new buildings and a large hangar that could accommodate large and high performance aircraft in future.
The Home Ministry project to build the base started five years ago and represented one of the relocation programs for the country's security facilities from the Kuala Lumpur Air Base in Sungai Besi.
The base was handed over to the PDRM last Feb 28.