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Thursday, 13 March 2014

Missing MH370: Families feel frustration of long wait

PUTRAJAYA: The tension of waiting with no news of their loved ones is getting to the families of those aboard MH370.

Selamat Omar (pic), 60, the father of 29-year-old aviation engineer Mohd Khairul Amri Selamat, screamed at an official assisting the families gathered at a hotel here for not being able to furnish him with any updates.

He approached a Malaysia Airlines (MAS) staff member at about 11am and suddenly yelled at the official.

Aku bapa dia! (I am his father!)” he shouted.

He was hurriedly led away by volunteers, but later re-emerged to speak quietly to some volunteers.

“Usually, I would have received an update around this time, but when no one could give me a straight answer, I got a little carried away.”

A calmer Selamat added that he would leave it to MAS to continue updating the families on the fate of the missing aircraft.

The mother of International Trade and Industry Ministry officer Sofuan Ibrahim, however, remains hopeful of his return.

Wantom Wan Chik, 74, said she believed her son was “okay and safe”. “Hopefully, the authorities will find the plane soon,” she said.

Accompanied by her three daughters, Wantom said she was an emotional wreck when she first heard the devastating news but was at peace now.

“Everyone has been very supportive, especially the JKM (Welfare Department) officials,” she said.

Sofuan, 33, is Wantom’s only son. She saw him off at KL International Airport on Friday before he departed for Beijing, where he was due to start work as the Second Secretary for Economics at the ministry’s office.

In Klang, G. Subramaniam, 60, was pining for his devoted son.

Puspanathan, 34, a marketing manager with an oil and gas company here, had been on his way for some work in Beijing in the ill-fated MH370.

“It is so painful and I never expected such a thing to happen,” Subra­maniam said.

Subramaniam, a former rubber tapper, said he was proud of his son for making it big in life.

Meanwhile, in Cyberjaya, tight security surrounded family members flown in from Beijing on Tuesday, making it impossible for media personnel to gain access to them at the hotel where they were put up at.

Two-thirds of the 227 passengers on the missing flight are Chinese citizens.

Tags / Keywords: Transport Safety , missing flight MH370 , MAS flight , KL , Beijing , missing flight , MH370


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