Five killed in Malaysia floods, Razak cuts short holiday in US

Five people, including a toddler, have been killed and over 100,000 people evacuated in Malaysia after one of the country's worst floods hit four states, forcing Prime Minister Najib Razak to cut short his holiday in the US.

PTI| Last Updated: Dec 26, 2014, 17:56 PM IST

Kuala Lumpur: Five people, including a toddler, have been killed and over 100,000 people evacuated in Malaysia after one of the country's worst floods hit four states, forcing Prime Minister Najib Razak to cut short his holiday in the US.

"Following recent reports that the situation had continued to worsen, the Prime Minister felt it was necessary to return to personally oversee the response," a government spokesman said.

Razak said in a statement he will return tomorrow, heading straight to flood-ravaged Kelantan state to oversee emergency relief work.

The country's citizens had been upset with Razak for going on holidays in Hawaii, where he was seen golfing with US President Barack Obama.

People posted messages on his Facebook page, asking him to return home to oversee relief operations.

The number of people evacuated in the four flood-hit states of Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang and Perak stood at 103,649 this morning, with Pahang seeing a sudden rise in the number of evacuees and Kelantan, a slight drop.

The five persons killed include a toddler who was swept away by strong currents after she fell from her mother's arms while they were wading in waters on their way to a relief centre.

Authorities evacuated several villages and towns that were inundated following torrential rain in the last one week.

Hundreds of thousands of people have sought shelter in schools, community halls and other relief centres, according to flood monitoring centres.

Meanwhile, continuous downpour since last night has caused flash floods in two areas in suburbs near here this morning, according to Selangor Fire and Rescue Department assistant director (Operation) Mohd Sani Harul.

It is the country's worst flooding in more than 30 years.

Heavy rain is expected to continue until the weekend, the meteorological department has said.