Loke Siew Fook says he had introduced plans to improve the ferry providers, not substitute the prevailing vessels.
PETALING JAYA: Former transport minister Loke Siew Fook has suggested MCA secretary-general Chong Sin Woon to concentrate on tackling cargo issues in Port Klang as a substitute of interfering within the Penang ferry subject.
He mentioned this was as a result of the Penang ferry subject had nothing to do with Chong.
“After disappearing for nearly two years having been rejected by voters in Seremban within the final normal election (GE14), Chong was appointed as Port Klang Board chairman by his boss (Wee Ka Siong), who entered the transport ministry by the again door,” he mentioned in a Fb put up at this time.
He was referring to Chong’s assertion yesterday saying Loke had introduced plans underneath the earlier Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration to implement water taxis or “catamaran boats” to switch a part of the Penang ferry service this 12 months.
Loke turned the tables on Chong, asking him to first settle the cargo backlog issues that had been reported at Westport.
“If he doesn’t perceive what I introduced in 2019, learn fastidiously,” he mentioned, quoting Astro Awani’s report on his announcement to improve the ferry service throughout his tenure as transport minister.
On Aug 23 final 12 months, Loke had mentioned the venture to improve the Penang ferry service could be carried out this 12 months underneath Syarikat Prasarana Malaysia. This included introducing catamaran-type boats in addition to a ferry to hold vacationers.
DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and Wee had been issuing statements on the ferry service, with the previous Penang chief minister upset that the “iconic ferries” had been being phased out to get replaced with extra environment friendly ferries.
He mentioned this was a “chilly and callous” strategy by the federal authorities which ignored the feelings of the locals and took the “romance” out of cross-channel journey.
“Many nations nonetheless retain their unique ferry providers although it is probably not economical resulting from their intrinsic value and intangible worth to heritage and historical past,” Lim had mentioned.
He additionally mentioned the cancellation of the service offered by the outdated Penang ferries was an instance of Perikatan Nasional (PN) authorities’s “open confrontation” with the DAP-led Penang authorities, with Wee appearing as its “hatchet man”.
Lim mentioned MCA and Wee, who’s MCA president, wouldn’t be forgiven by the individuals of Penang for doing so.
Wee had cleared the preliminary confusion over whether or not the outdated ferries could be repaired and retained by asserting that they’d be retired for good.
He mentioned they’d make means for “safer, sooner and cheaper-to-maintain” water buses (to hold passengers) and transporters for bikes and emergency automobiles. These are anticipated to reach by mid-2022.
Vehicles and lorries should use the 2 current bridges connecting the mainland and the island.