PUTRAJAYA: Family members of those on board the ill-fated MH370 have surrendered five new pieces of debris, believed to be part of the Malaysia Airlines aircraft which went missing in 2014.
The relatives passed the items, which had been found washed ashore in Madagascar, to Transport Minister Anthony Loke at the ministry on Friday (Nov 30).
One of the next-of-kin, Grace Nathan, had urged the government not to close down any chance to search for the missing aircraft.
“The fact that debris is still washing up ashore means we should not stop looking for the plane.
“If there are companies that are open to search for the plane on a no find, no fee basis, we hope the government will take it up,” said Grace at a press conference after the handing over the debris to the ministry.
Loke said the government has not totally shut down on the idea of resuming the search for MH370.
“The government has never closed down on any possibilities. If there are credible leads, we are open to resuming the search,” said Loke.
The five pieces of debris were found on three different locations in Madagascar, between December 2016 and August 2018.
They were all found by villagers and local fishermen.
Also present at the handover was amateur investigator Blaine Gibson, who had been conducting his own searches for clues relating to MH370.
Gibson said one of the significant pieces of debris was believed to be a floor panel of a Boeing 777, which was found last year near Sandravinany, in Southern Madagascar.
“I have consulted independent experts who said the piece was likely to be the passenger floor panel of a Boeing 777.
“If the authorities could officially verify this, then it is a significant find, because it indicates that the floor of the plane had shattered.
“If the floor of the plane shattered, it would indicate that there is no intact fuselage,” said Gibson.
Flight MH370 was on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, with 239 people on board, when it disappeared and became one of the world’s greatest aviation mysteries.
Malaysian and international investigators believe the jet veered thousands of miles off course from its scheduled route before eventually plunging into the Indian Ocean.
In all, 27 pieces of aircraft debris have been collected from various places around the world but only three wing fragments that washed up along the Indian Ocean coast have been confirmed to be from MH370, according to Reuters.