Kopi'vosian, Greetings from Sabah!
To all our Muslim friends and readers Salam Selamat Ramadan.
Sabah made good progress in tourism business, the first-half of 2013. There were increased air accessibility and flight-frequencies into Sabah with more airlines connecting from regional capitals into Kota Kinabalu, including record arrivals of charter flights. Several global corporate brands from Europe and the Asia Pacific region, including a Bishops Conference held their meetings and corporate incentives programmes in Kota Kinabalu. Afterwards, these corporate incentives travel to Sandakan to visit the Turtle Islands, the world renowned Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Sanctuary and upriver to Sukau the popular wildlife habitat, the favourite filming destinations of BBC naturalists Sir David Attenborough, the National Geography, Discovery Channel and more.
Subsequent to the February Sulu intrusions to Sabah at the remote coastal village of Tanduo, the Government established the ESSCOM (Eastern Sabah Security Command) along the entire east coast of Sabah from Kudat in the north to Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Tawau in the southeast. This ESSCOM is similar to the USA Homeland Security on the USA-Mexico border and the Australian Government's own ADF against infiltrations/illegal arrivals and smuggling. The Malaysian "Ops Daulat" military offensive had successfullymopped up the intruder-terrorists. The remote Tanduo village is now a Malaysian security base.
Sabah, the Land Below the Wind enjoy continuous celebrations, festivals and events including the World Amateur Inter Team Golf Championship 2013 (WAITGC), Anzac Day Service Sandakan in April welcomed record attendance of British and Australian families, relatives and friends of WW2 POWs; the colourful Regatta Lepa Semporna; the Sabah Fest Grand Cultural Extravaganza; the month-long Harvest Festival Celebrations (Pesta Kaamatan), the Borneo Bird Festival Sandakan; the 7th KK Jazz Festival; the 28th Sabah Dragon Boat Race; the Sunset Music Fest @ the northernmost Tip Of Borneo, Kudat with many international visitors stayed for a few days Rungus longhouses. We also welcomed the 600 passengers from the MS Amadea Cruise Ship from Germany and more than 450 pharmaceutical representatives from Novartis Korea. The 10th Borneo International Yachting Challenge with boats from all over the world, sailing the whole coastline of Sabah, including to Kudat, Sandakan, Lahad Datu sailing by Tanduo village onward to Semporna and Tawau. In August, Sandakan will welcome and host 6,000 scouts in the International Scout Jamboree. On 16th September, we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Malaysia!
Diving is year-round in Sabah. April/May is the start of the popular spring-summer season with divers heading to the dive-sites and islands at Layang-Layang, Mantanani and Pulau Tiga on the west coast and to the east coast islands of Lankayan, Selingan Turtle islands, Mabul, Mataking, Pom Pom, Pandanan and world renowned, Sipadan. The Government has strengthened and further enhanced the armed security forces on these islands. Once again, we wish to assure that Sabah is Safe.
See you in Sabah !