KOTA KINABALU, March 30 — The drought in Sabah has worsened, increasing the number of those affected to more than 10,000 people statewide.
State Natural Disaster Management Committee secretariat chief Kol Mulliadi Al Hamdi Ladin said those affected are from some 355 villages across 22 districts that have reported disruption to their water supply due to the El Nino phenomenon.
The biggest affected area is in the northern district of Kudat with 53 villages, followed by Tuaran with 43 villages, Inanam with 36 villages and Kota Belud with 26 villages, Beaufort with 23 villages, Sook with 20 villages, Kuala Penyu and Ranau both with 19 villages among others.
In Kudat, 16 of the 18 villages affected are on Banggi Island, where water had begun to run out a week ago, causing school children to fall sick.
“In Banggi, efforts by the district office are in progress to send water to the island,” said Mulliadi, adding that some 1,200 boxes of bottled water are ready to be shipped within the week.
Mulliadi also said each home in other districts would get between 200 to 400 gallons of water, or roughly a maximum of 1,500 litres maximum for consumption, because some homes only had water tanks that could store a maximum of 750 litres.
“In some districts like Tuaran, water is sent to a designated location where water is distributed to the villagers from there,” he said.
Water is being delivered by trucks under the supervision of the Water Department, Public Works Department, Civil Defence Department and the district offices involved.