Survivor of tragic Keningau mudslide dies of bacterial infection

OLIVIA MIWIL


KINABATANGAN: One of the survivors of the Keningau mudslide on April 1, which killed five children and left two missing, died yesterday from a medical condition which may have been connected to the disaster.

District police chief Superintendent A. Sahak Rahmat said Zalikah Malingkut, 50, passed away at hospital yesterday morning from a bacterial infection.

"We were informed by the hospital that Zalikah died due to an infection, but they did not specify how she was infected.

"(But the two remaining) survivors, Zalikah's husband, Abdul Kahalayan, 50, and their 18-year-old son Joshnam, are well," he added.

The three were among 11 family members who were swept into Sungai Labou on April 1 when their house – an oil palm plantation worker’s quarters – was slammed by a mudslide following heavy rain.

Rescue teams last week managed to find six bodies of children scattered throughout the district in Kampung Masaum, Kampung Mangkawago, Kampung Pasik and Sungai Milliam.

Two other children are still missing.

The family, from Tanjung Labian in Lahad Datu, had only just moved into the temporary quarters two weeks ago, and were planning to shift to another dwelling when the tragedy occurred.

The operation, which was terminated on Friday, involved more than 50 people from the Fire and Rescue Department, the police, the Civil Defence Force, plantation workers and villagers in surrounding areas near the Nabawan-Tongod border.