Set up independent advisory panel to investigate the Sabah boat incident — DAP

JANUARY 31 — On behalf of DAP Sabah, I would like to extend our deepest condolences to the family of the three Chinese tourists who lost their lives in the Sabah boat incident.

I hope that the government and relevant authorities could continue with their best efforts in searching for the remaining missing victims.

This mishap has indeed caused a huge impact to the tourism sector in Sabah, thus many questions had been raised. I urge the relevant authorities to keep the public, as well as the victims’ families updated from time to time, with an open and transparent attitude.

Prior to this tragedy there were reports being made in regards to the illegal practices being carried out in this industry. Therefore an Independent Advisory Panel is imperatively needed in order for a post accident report to be produced, in order to serve justice to the victims and families affected in this tragic event.

With thousands of tourist requests on boat services to the Sabahan islands each day, the quality and safety maintenance for the transport of its kind is at great importance in order to maintain our state’s good reputation in this growing industry.

Accidents could be unavoidable, yet mistakes have to be learnt. It is now the government’s duty to carry out an investigation with dignity in order to serve justice to the people, rather than playing the blame game between departments at this critical moment.

DAP Sabah once again would like to urge the government to monitor all sea transportations with punishable regulations and hold the owners of these transportations with strict liability, for their boat services should be equipped with better connectivity in communications, updated GPS functions and sufficient distress systems. Safety of tourists traveling at the land below the wind remains the key factor for Sabah to soar higher in the tourism industry.

* This press statement is submitted by Phoong Jin Zhe, Sabah DAP Publicity Secretary.

** This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail Online.