SANDAKAN, March 3 — The search and rescue operation (SAR) for three more missing victims of a capsized boat in the waters off Pulau Nunuyan, in its third today, will continue tomorrow morning.
According to a statement by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) here, the operation was stopped at 6pm today and will continue at 7am tomorrow.
The body of an adult male was found off the waters near the BDC Village near here at 9.05am and was identified as Ibrahim Januari 27, a Filipino who was aboard the ill-fated boat, it added.
Apart from Ibrahim, two other victims Kimar Herman, 7, and Aidah Kadil, 35, were found on Friday and yesterday afternoon respectively.
The three missing victims are two girls and the boat skipper, who is believed to have attempted to flee, by using the boat’s oil barrel as a float.
The SAR operation was activated after five victims were found safe by the Royal Malaysian Navy (TLDM) assault boat at 12.15 pm on Friday.
They were seen clinging to the boat which had overturned, about 18 hours after the 6pm incident on Thursday (Feb 28).
The boat believed to be on its way here (Sandakan) from the Taganak Island in the Philippines, had overturned because of the rough sea conditions.
Meanwhile, Sandakan Police Chief ACP Mohd Azhar Hamin, said the boat had been seized and investigations will be carried out as it it did not have a permit to carry passengers.
He said the five survivors comprising three men and two Filipino women had also been detained to assist in the investigations. — Bernama