Image: Azneal Ishak
Malaysia was once one of the strongest in the region in terms of defence assets.
But that was 20 years ago.
Now, according to Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu (Mat Sabu), our country's land, naval and air deference assets are at the bottom of the rank
among Southeast Asian nations.
However, he did not specify whether he was talking about the quality of the assets, quantity or service level.
"Vietnam is far ahead, Indonesia is on top while Malaysia is the lowest," he said, as quoted by the New Straits Times
This is frankly quite embarrassing for Malaysia, especially on the world stage.
Neverthelesss, Mat Sabu has vowed to work hard and turn things around for us.
"I will work to make Malaysia great again, number one again,” he said.
According to Globalfirepower, a website that assesses a country's military strength, made a list of '2018 Military Strength Ranking
' this year.
In that ranking, Malaysia was ranked fifth out of nine countries in Southeast Asia. We're apparently ahead of the Philippines, Singapore (shocker!), Cambodia and Laos.
Over the years, Mat Sabu said that defence allocations were interrupted, thus making it difficult for the ministry to work on projects and maintenance.
"These assets are all old, and need lots of allocations to be restored. I can blame the previous government, but that won’t solve any problems," he added.
"We will fix all weaknesses and we will not repeat past mistakes."
Besides that, the ministry is also currently weighing the options to upgrabe our air defence capabilities. Some of the options include maritime surveillance aircraft (MSA) and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).
These will benefit patrols in the South China Sea and the Straits of Melaka.
Well, it's not every day we hear about our country's army and navy. Read more about the Malaysian army here