Revise trip itinerary to Cairo, committee told

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 20 Jan 2005

SHAH ALAM: The Selangor government has asked the state Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to revise the itinerary of its planned trip to Cairo, which included watching a belly dancing performance. 

“This has been made clear to the PAC,” senior state executive councillor Datuk Tang See Hang said after meeting investors at the Selangor State Investment Corporation yesterday. 

He said the state executive council had given the approval for the PAC to go on a study tour of the Egyptian capital but, he added: “They must make sure the tour sticks to the intention of enriching knowledge.” 

He said he had checked with two senior PAC members and was told the itinerary was not the finalised version. 

“I was informed that the itinerary was proposed by the organisers in Egypt,” he said, adding that the PAC members were also uncomfortable with the belly dancing and wanted the trip cancelled. 

The Selangor PAC was scheduled to go on an eight-day tour of Cairo from Saturday to Jan 30. 

It has, however, been put on hold after committee member Ng Suee Lim pulled out from the delegation and charged that the trip was more of a “holiday getaway” than a study tour.  

He said while the trip was supposed to be an avenue for the state elected representatives to exchange views with their counterparts in Cairo, the itinerary only provided for two official functions. 

These were a visit to the Malaysian Embassy and another visit to the Egyptian Parliament, both on Jan 24. 

Ng said the rest of the programme was packed with leisure activities, such as a river cruise down the Nile and watching belly dancing, a laser show in Giza and a shopping spree at the Khan El Khalili bazaar. 

The delegation would stay in the five-star Sheraton El Gazirah Hotel in Cairo and the four-star Cathrine Plaza Hotel in St Catherine. 

Ng said the trip was “too out of line” for a body entrusted with the responsibility to scrutinise state expenditure. 

When contacted, state opposition chief Teng Chang Khim criticised Tang for giving lame excuses to cover-up a gross oversight on the part of the exco.  

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