CM: Those responsible will face the music
Published on: Thursday, February 02, 2017

Kota Kinabalu: The State Government assured that those found guilty of negligence in the recent catamaran boat mishap will face the strong arm of the law.Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Musa Haji Aman said he hoped the thorough probe would bring to light what caused the tragic incident. He has also directed the relevant authorities to clamp down on irresponsible boat operators who did not abide by the existing regulations when ferrying passengers out to sea.

"On behalf of the Sabah State government, I wish to once again extend our deepest condolences to the families of those who perished and to the Chinese government over this mishap," he said during a courtesy by China's ambassador to Malaysia, Huang Hui Kang, at Sri Gaya, Wednesday.

"We including our Prime Minister are all equally concerned over this most unfortunate incident."

Musa also assured the Chinese emissary that those who survived the ordeal were getting the best medical attention at the government hospital.

Meanwhile, Huang voiced his appreciation to the state government and relevant authorities for extending their full assistance in the search and rescue operation.

"We are grateful for the efforts extended. The search & rescue operation is thus far gone well," he said.

He also hoped for China's continued cooperation with Sabah especially where tourism was concerned.

"Sabah is such an attractive tourist destination for the Chinese. We hope their safety is assured to keep this momentum going," he said.

Meanwhile, visiting the victims laters, Huang said an explanation is due to the families of the tourists who died.

He said Sabah should also explain to the families what is being done to prevent similar incidents from recurring.

"This is the worst thing to have happened during Chinese New Year. It should not have happened at all," Huang said after visiting the 20 survivors at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital here.

Three tourists died after the catamaran sank. Six people, including a crewman, remain missing.

Huang said lessons must be learnt from the incident to improve safety for tourists, adding that visitors to Sabah should feel that they can return home safely.

He said that the Chinese government is closely following the rescue efforts for their five nationals and the remaining Sabahan crewman.

"Our top leaders, including the President and the Prime Minister, have instructed the embassy and consulate here that every effort must be made to account for those who remain missing," Huang said.

"We cannot give up or lose hope in finding them," he added.


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