The Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (MOTAC) has allocated RM250,000 to repair and restore the century-old Masjid Lama Machap in Melaka as an attraction for the 2024 Visit Melaka Year (TMM).
Machap Jaya assemblyman Ngwe Hee Sem said the uniquely designed mosque is gazetted under the National Heritage Act 2005 and is historically significant.
“It is believed that the construction of the mosque is based on the concept of unity among the multi-racial community, with even the Chinese donating money to build a place of worship for the Muslims.
“There is a carved plaque with a list of donors written in Chinese while the unique murals on its walls, cannot be found in other mosques in Melaka,” he told reporters after visiting the mosque, which is located next to the Durian Tunggal Dam, earlier this week.
He hoped that the restoration will be carried out quickly to ensure the safety of the mosque and ensure it is safe for use by the surrounding community and also be ready as an attraction during TMM.
According to its history, the mosque was built by a Bugis scholar known as Datuk Machap who came to Melaka around the year 1500 during the reign of Sultan Mahmud Shah, said Ngwe.
Open to suggestions
Elsewhere, Perlis says it welcomes any feedback, constructive suggestions and continuous improvement from agencies and representatives of tourism operators and visitors to boost the tourism sector in the state, in preparation of Visit Perlis Year 2024-2025 (TMP2024-2025), said the Raja Muda of Perlis, Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Jamalullail.
“The Perlis Tourism Physical Planning Master Plan covers five sectors known as ‘Tourism Trails’ which are ecotourism trails, agritourism trail, cultural, historical, art and heritage tourism trails, shopping and food trails, as well as sports and recreation tourism trails,” he said in a statement issued by Yayasan Tuanku Syed Putra Perlis recently.
He said this after the launch of the Perlis Food Promotion at Restoran Malaysia Nur Muhammad in Istanbul, Turkiye.
Also present at the event were the Raja Puan Muda of Perlis Tuanku Dr Hajah Lailatul Shahreen Akashah Khalil and their son, Syed Sirajuddin Areeb Putra Jamalullail. Accompanying the royal family was the Consul General of Malaysia in Istanbul Tengku Mohd Dzaraif Raja Abdul Kadir and Universiti Malaysia Perlis vice-chancellor Datuk Prof Dr Zaliman Sauli.
At the event, Restoran Malaysia Nur Muhammad served a special menu “Kurma Daging Perlis”.
A win for domestic tourism Meanwhile, Malaysia’s domestic tourism had an encouraging performance in 2022 when it recorded a total expenditure of RM59.2bil compared to RM17.5bil in 2021, according to a report released by the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM) recently.
The report is based on the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA). The TSA is a statistical framework to measure tourism industry growth and its contributions to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said there was a significant increase in three main components in the domestic tourism spending in 2022, namely shopping (42.1%), food and beverages (16.4%) and fuel for vehicles (14.9%).
He said international tourism spending also showed a significant increase of RM33.4bil compared to RM0.5bil in 2021.
“This encouraging performance is due to the reopening of the country’s borders to international tourists on April 1, 2022, the scrapping of the need for Covid-19 quarantine and screening tests upon arrival in Malaysia since Aug 1, 2022,” he said in a statement.
Mohd Uzir said overseas travel also recorded a significant impact, with expenditure totalling RM22.5bil in 2022 compared to RM10.5bil the previous year, which is an increase of 114.6%.
For 2022, he said the tourism industry contributed 23.4% to the total workforce, with 3.61 million people employed compared to 3.52 million people in 2021.
The tourism sector’s contributions to the GDP grew by 26.7% when it contributed 14% or RM251.5bil in 2022 compared to 12.8% or RM198.5bil the previous year.
He said the Tourism Direct GDP in 2022 recorded RM47.9bil compared to RM11.6bil the previous year. – Bernama