SANDAKAN – Marine policeman Lance Corporal Zakia Aleip, who was kidnapped by an armed group in Pulau Mabul, Semporna in July last year, was released today, announced Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.
The announcement was made at a press conference, which was also attended by Zakia, who just arrived in Sandakan this morning from southern Philippines, by boat.
“We are thankful to the Almighty because as a result of the continued efforts by the government through negotiations, family prayers and patience, he was freed.
“I express my appreciation and gratitude to our security forces who have been making every effort to ensure Zakia’s freedom,” he said.
Musa said he had contacted Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to inform him of the development.
Musa said Najib expressed happiness over the news and thanked the security forces in their tireless efforts to release Zakia.
As the Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCom) and State Security Committee chairman, Musa called on the security forces to always be on the alert in any situation.
This was to ensure the safety and security of the Sabah people and protecting them from any security threat, he said.
Zakia, 26, was kidnapped after gunmen attacked a marine police unit at a resort in Pulau Mabul at around 11.10pm on July 12.
His colleague Corporal Ab. Rajah Jamuan, 32, was killed in the attack. – BERNAMA