At least 24 people have been killed in Malaysia and Thailand in the worst flooding the region has seen for more than a decade.

Ten people lost their lives in northern Malaysia, where nearly 160,000 people have been forced from their homes. Rising flood water has made some roads impassable, hampering rescue efforts.

Relief goods have been flown in to help people stranded due to the torrential north-east monsoon rains, with more heavy rainfall predicted.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak toured some of the worst-hit areas over the weekend, following his return from a holiday in Hawaii.

The Prime Minister was criticised for his absence during the calamity, being photographed playing golf with US President Barack Obama.

Over the border in southern Thailand, 14 people have been killed in the floods that began in mid-December.

Northeastern Malaysia and southern Thailand are regularly hit by flooding during the annual northeast monsoon, but this year the rain has been particularly heavy.

The Malaysian government said rain in Kelantan and southern Thailand would last for at least another week. An official in the southern Thai border town of Sungai Kolok said it would take up to two days for water levels to drop and for the border to be reopened.