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Posted on September 14, 2011, Wednesday
Source: Borneo post
Posted on September 14, 2011, Wednesday
Chinese cultural torch reaches Mount Kinabalu peak
KOTA KINABALU: The sacred torch of the 28th National Chinese Cultural Festival 2011 successfully reached the peak of South East Asia’s highest mountain, Mount Kinabalu, on Monday which coincidentally was the mid-Autumn festival.
Organising chairperson of the National Cultural Festival, Datuk Susan Wong Siew Guen who brought the sacred torch up to the peak together with youth members of the host, The Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS), said:
“It was the most prestigious moment when we reached the top of Mount Kinabalu and I am so excited and delighted that we have successfully brought the sacred torch to the peak.” This reflected the words of Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun during the Ranau Torch Run on September 10 that legend has it that a representative of the then Emperor of China actually went up the mountain to find a diamond said to be kept in the mouth of a dragon on the peak, and this belief has since become part of Chinese culture. With the Chinese culture torch reaching the peak of Mount Kinabalu, it was indeed a glory for the Chinese community in Sabah and this has set a new historical record.
Masidi said these when presenting the torch to Susan and her team members after lighting the cauldron at the Pai Wen Primary School compound in Ranau.
The Ranau Torch Run, which was the sixth in the series of runs across the state, started at the school compound and then around Ranau town on September 10. The run was to promote Chinese culture to the people and to bring to them an awareness of this heritage cultural festival. More than 300 participants consisting of students and the community took part in the run which was jointly organised by the Ranau Hakka Association headed by Datuk Jimmy Tham Yuk Leong, the Ranau Hokkien Association led by Tee Geok Moi and Ranau Sino-Native Association headed by Alldem Chia.
Susan in her speech after the run said she was very grateful to Masidi for giving his fullest support and participation in the run.
“We are very honoured to have the minister light the cauldron at the finishing point and this is symbolic of his close rapport with the people under the 1Malaysia concept,” she said. She further added that Masidi’s contributions to the Chinese community, especially to Chinese education, were very much appreciated by FCAS and the people.
Masidi, who is also Karanaan assemblyman, in his speech congratulated Susan and said these activities had the support of his ministry.
He also said it was high time for the federal government to re-look at the position of Chinese stream schools, especially those in Sabah under the 1Malaysia concept.
The Chinese medium schools, with an increasing enrollment of non-Chinese students, needed federal assistance to enable them to be run more efficiently and effectively.
Masidi said Ranau is a good example of 1Malaysia as the issue of race or religion never arose in the district.
The minister together with Kundasang assemblyman Dr Joachim Gunsalam also witnessed a handing over of RM5,000, being personal donation from Susan to the chairman of Pai Wen Primary School Management Board, Alldem Chia.
Meanwhile, the 28th National Chinese Cultural Festival organised by the Malaysian Chinese Association and hosted by FCAS will be held at the Likas Sports Stadium in Kota Kinabalu on November 11. This will be the second time Sabah is hosting this annual event which is rotated among the states, after 16 years.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak together with Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Musa Haji Aman have been invited to grace the opening ceremony.
The programmes include a cultural village and food court, cultural singing and dancing performances. A spectacular fireworks display will also brighten up the evening.
Local Kota Belud-born international singer Gary Chaw who is now residing in Taiwan, will also perform during the evening.
Admission to the cultural festival on November 11 is free of charge and all are welcome to join in this grand event.
Source Daily express.
Published on: Monday, September 12, 2011
'Unsafe' Kundasang resort must cease operations: Masidi
Kota Kinabalu: Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun on Sunday said the operator of a resort in Kundasang must cease operations after it was found to be unsafe by the authorities. He said several visitors checked into the resort about three days ago but moved out and stayed in another lodging elsewhere after knowing the precarious condition of the resort concerned. He said the resort is sitting dangerously on a slope but its operator was adamant to continue operating business as usual. "This should not happen because it just takes one fatal incident to wipe out the tourism industry there," he told reporters at the launching of Red Onion restaurant at Jalan Penampang By-pass. Masidi also said if the highland resort do not cease operations, action would be taken against its operator.
Initial investigations showed many of the resorts or lodgings in Kundasang do not comply with the basic safety requirements. To this, Masidi said the operators would be given until next year to comply, adding that a committee headed by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry has been formed to look into the matter. "If the operators still failed to adhere to the instructions then, the Government might consider not renewing their licences. We cannot gamble with the people's lives," he said.
Nevertheless, the Karanaan Assembyman said it is futile if they only enjoy a one-off profit and then proceed to lose everything in one day. He said the tourism industry operates in a very competitive environment and, thus, players who disregard any directive from the Government will have to be dealt with. Masidi said he wanted the committee to identify hotels or motels in Kundasang that do not have the occupational certificate (OC).
"Do not wait for people to complain," he said. On another issue, Masidi said while it is important to clear the "conflict" as to the actual age of the nation, more importantly, there is a need to determine what has been done in the last 48 years after the Federation of Malaysia was formed. The current generation, he said, should evaluate the performance of the Government of the day and resolve how to improve the lives of the people and that of the country. If the people continued to dwell on the issue, he said they would lose sight of what is more important to the country.
Malaysia to host PATA conference 2012
Date: 9 Sept 2011
NEW DELHI: After a lapse of a decade, Malaysia will host the tourism industry's pre-event, the Pacific Asia Travel Association annual conference, next year. About 600 delegates from 60 countries, mostly doyen of the international travel and tourism industry, are likely to attend the conference in Putrajaya from April 20 to 22. “For a long, time, we did not bring the big players from the Pata fraternity to Malaysia. This will be a good platform to promote our new products to the world," Tourism Malaysia acting director-general Datuk Azizan Noordin said. Malaysia hosted the 50th Pata Annual Conference in Kuala Lumpur in 2001. Malaysia has been in the forefront of the global tourism industry, with its impeccable record, steadily wooing millions of foreign tourists to its shores. Last year, Malaysia registered a record 24.5 million tourist arrivals with a staggering RM56.5 billion in revenue, second only to the manufacturing sector. “In Putrajaya, we will focus on green tourism, youth tourism and the use of technology, especially on how to engage the social media.— Bernama /
Source : Daily Express
|All 394 Sabah Islands named|
Date: 9 Sept 2011
Sherell Ann Jeffrey
KOTA KINABALU: The Lands and Survey Department's Principal Assistant Director (Survey), Bernard Liew, said Sabah has 394 islands with a majority of them being mangrove ones."All the islands which had no name were given names. The State Cabinet endorsed these islands and their names on Aug. 17 this year," he said during the Assessment and Preparation of Island Management Plan question and answer session, here, Thursday.He said Semporna has the highest number with 83 islands followed by Kudat with 77. "I would like to highlight Marudu Bay, which is considered offshore. There are approximately 20 mangrove islands in Marudu Bay along the bottom part of the Kota Marudu district alone," he said."We conducted a statewide exercise since 2009 to identify and name all the islands off Sabah. We worked with each district through their respective District Officers and Assistant District Officers by going to the islands and finding the common names used by the villagers to identify these islands. We recorded whatever information gathered and adopted most of the names."Earlier, a speaker, Wong Lie Lie, said that based on the 2003-2005 Sabah shoreline management plan, there were 339 islands in Sabah waters with most of them still remaining unnamed. Liew responded saying: "Some of the islands have grown and joined with the main islands which make the smaller islands non-existing but there are also some islands coming out which is why we can come up with 394 islands.""You officially use a definition of island under the United Nation Conference on the Law of the Sea which says that the international hydro-graphic organisation island is surrounded by waters and is always above sea level even during high or low tide," he said.
Source : Daily Express
|Limiting Number of Visitors to Mabul next|
Date: 9 Sept 2011
THE State Tourism, Culture and Environmental Ministry would look at the possibility of limiting the number of visitors to Pulau Mabul, a popular diving resort near Pulau Sipadan. Its Assistant Minister Datuk Bolkiah Ismail said the move was pertinent to avoid overcrowding and to preserve the island."The number of visitors is increasing every year. If the situation is not controlled, it could impact adversely on marine life as well as the environment at Pulau Mabul Park and the surrounding islands in the long run," he said.; He said the Government would solicit the views of stakeholders including tourism operators before introducing the new guidelines.He said the Ministry had earlier introduced guidelines restricting the number of visitors to Pulau Sipadan, which is among the most popular scuba diving centers in the world. On the development of islands as tourism centers including those owned by individuals, he said the Ministry would conduct a study to identify them.
Source : Daily Express
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