Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Travel advisory to the east coast of Sabah did not reflect actual situation

KOTA KINABALU: The travel advisory issued by the United Kingdom and Australia to warn their citizens against travelling to the east coast of Sabah did not reflect the actual situation here, Assistant Minister of Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Pang Yuk Ming said.

While the countries have the right to protect their citizens, Pang pointed out the double standards as no travel advisory was issued for places like Paris, Jakarta and Thailand where recent incidents have claimed multiple lives.

On the contrary, he said an all-out travel alert was issued for Sabah, whether there was such incident or not.

The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has advised its citizens against all but essential travel to islands off the east coast of Sabah, and raised the terror threat level from ‘general’ to ‘high’.

Australia also advised its citizens to avoid all travel to coastal resorts in the east cost of Sabah due to high threat of kidnapping.

He said the countries should be fair to Sabah when they issued the travel alert.

Pang said China’s Ambassador to Malaysia Huang Huikang had personally visited Semporna and went to one of the islands.

“If the situation is as bad as what is projected, the Ambassador himself would not have made the trip."