LAHAD DATU: Life is turning into a nightmare for the family of Arsyad Sagoni, who was among the hostages taken from the Borneo Paradise Eco Resort.
Arsyads wife Sannang Jappu, 43, is battling cancer while their 17-year-old daughter Nurhasnah has lost all interest to study for her SPM examinations next month.
Why is this happening to us? said Sannang as she broke into tears when she spoke of her husband.
I do not know what test Allah has for us. All I hope is that my husband returns home safely to the family, said Sannang who is being treated for breast cancer here.
The family held special prayers at their wooden home in Kampung Durian about 3km from here yesterday evening, hoping for the safe return of Arsyad, an Indonesian worker who was taken with two other of his countrymen and three Filipino workers.
I just cant concentrate. Every time I sit to study, my fathers face comes to mind, said Nurhasnah, who is an Arts student at SMK Sapagaya near here.
As tears welled in her eyes, her younger brother Mohd Saad consoled her as they prayed for the safe return of their father who was hired to do construction work at the chalets of the Borneo Paradise Eco Resort three months ago.
According to Sannang, Arsyad returned often from Borneo Paradise to check on her, while sometimes she went to the resort to stay with him.
I met him here a week ago when he had returned to visit us, she said.
Arsyad and two other carpenters were contracted to build the new chalet at the riverine resort while the three others taken by the gunmen were the resorts two watchmen and a male receptionist.
At least three people including a resort watchman who claimed he managed to escape from the gunmen during the raid, have been detained so far as security forces continue their land, sea and air search for the kidnappers and the hostages.
A five-hour power failure that occurred two days after the abduction also rattled residents here.
Calls to the Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd office here went unanswered as some people resorted to calling others to find out the reason for the breakdown.
Though it turned out to be a power generation problem from a power plant in Sandakan, the power outage got the town folk worried.
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