MELAKA: The bloody tragedy that occurred when he was on duty during an ambush by a group of armed militants from the southern Philippines at Kampung Simunul, Semporna, Sabah on March 2, 2013, is still fresh in the memory of DSP Mohamad Hasnal Jamil.
Although eight years have passed and the scars, from three gunshot and six stab wounds, remain, they will never dampen the spirit of this 39-year-old police officer to continue serving the country.
“As a member of the security forces who has pledged allegiance, the responsibility of safeguarding the security and sovereignty of the country is a priority that must be defended even if (our) lives are at stake.
“I think of the country more than anything as the police force are the frontliners of the nation,” he told reporters when met at the 214th Police Day celebration here today.
Mohammad Hasnal was the sole recipient of the National Warriors and Defence Trust Fund (TAPPN) in the state, which was presented by Melaka police chief Datuk Abdul Majid Mohd Ali.
Recalling the incident that happened eight years ago when he joined Op Daulat on the east coast of Sabah, Mohammad Hasnal, who was attached to the Bukit Aman Special Branch unit then, said he was assigned to conduct a survey and fight the enemies at the water village after police got wind of the intruders’ plan to capture the Semporna district police headquarters.
He said the non-stop shootout with the enemies, which began at 7.30 pm on that fateful day, lasted about 15 minutes.
“My chief, the late Supt Ibrahim Lebar, and I were seriously injured but when I asked him about the escalating situation, he simply replied: ‘We fight’.
“So we fought and I saw my comrades, one by one, including Tuan Ibrahim, killed in the battle. Despite being shot, Tuan Ibrahim fought bravely till the end,” he said.
Mohamad Hasnal said that he too fought on despite being slashed on the head and both arms and shot in both hands and abdomen until it penetrated the back of his body.
He said their mission was to defend the nation at all costs and that six policemen died in the ambush.
“They (intruders) alleged that they had the rightful claim to Sabah, but Sabah is part of our country. So, the security forces team and I were determined to stop them as it was a violation of our country’s sovereignty.
“I had actually given up at that time but, Alhamdulillah (praise be to God), I have been given the opportunity to enjoy life until now,” said Mohamad Hasnal, who underwent treatment for three months for the injuries he sustained.