(Excerpt from Utusan Malaysia)

KOTA KINABALU 12 June – Residents in the city area and those by the river and coastal areas in particular are requested not to litter the water as this causes nearby islands to be polluted.

The Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Tan Sri Joseph Kurup said, such irresponsible practice which has been dragging on for ages should be stopped immediately.

''Rubbish and wastes thrown into the three rivers near Kota Kinabalu flow into the sea causing a major factor of environmental pollution to the surrounding islands.

''Those living near the rivers and the sea  are the main contributors to the problems,” he said at a press conference here today after visiting Sabah Gardens Office in Pulau Manukan.

He further commented on the issue of rubbish and wastes from the main land causing a major problem to several tourism islands of about five nautical miles from here.

Kurup said that although Kota Kinabalu City Hall had imposed compounds on the public who commit such offence, the action has not yet managed to effectively curb the problems.

He said, many are not aware that preserving the islands will indirectly promote the breeding of  marine life there.

As such, his department will launch activities on environmental awareness and the importance of preserving the environment to ensure that the natural treasures remain unpolluted.

Such measure, according to him, is necessary in preventing any acts or activities which will pollute or harm the environment in the long run.

“Our main target is the younger generation to have high level of awareness on the need to preserve the environment. We also hope the reinforcement of law is executed.”