The Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia (LKIM) will provide RM2,000 financial assistance to each fisherman affected by the storm brought on by the tail end of Typhoon Lekima last Friday. -- STR/SHAHNAZ FAZLIE SHAHRIZAL

GEORGE TOWN: The Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia (LKIM) will provide RM2,000 financial assistance to each fisherman affected by the storm brought on by the tail end of Typhoon Lekima last Friday.

Its chairman Muhammad Faiz Fadzil said the financial aid would be given to 176 fishermen in the northen states, whose houses were damaged as a result of the storm.

"The documentation process is ongoing and fishermen affected by the storm must lodge a police report and inform their respective Fishermen's Association.

"We hope the assistance will in a way help ease their burden," he said when met at the Amal Ihtimam Korban Bank Islam programme at the Teluk Tempoyak fishermen village, here.

Present were Bank Islam chief operating officer Mohamed Iran Moriff Mohd Shariff and Penang Fishermen's Association chairman Nazri Ahmad.

Some five cows were sacrificed to be distibuted to the fishing community and locals in the programme organised by Bank Islam with LKIM as its strategic partner.

Meanwhile, speaking at a separate press conference this afternoon, Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said the state executive council was deliberating on assistance to be given to storm victims in the state.

He said a total of 2,022 families were affected by the storm in all five districts, with the highest in the Seberang Prai Utara district involving 895 families.

"I have received a report from the respective district officers on the matter.

"We are still discussing at the weekly state exco meeting on the kind of assistance to be given," he added.

Earlier, Faiz said LKIM is in efforts to increase the quick freezing (IQF) facilities in all states to increase the production of the QFish, part of the "ikan rakyat".

IQF facilities are now only available in Besut, Terengganu and Kuala Kedah, Kedah.

"Fresh frozen fish, such as kembung, selar and selayang, are usually sold at a cheaper price of RM10 per kg.

"With the increase in the IQF facilities, we hope to rejuvenate the fisheries industry to help the government reduce the cost of living, and at the same time, improve the livelihood of the fisherfolk," he said.