JOHOR BARU: Rooms at homestays and hotels around Tanjung Piai and Pontian are being snapped up ahead of next month’s by-election.
A clerk in a hotel located in Kukup, Nor Esilah Mohd Ali, 23, said all its rooms have been booked from Nov 1.
“We started getting a lot of booking requests from Oct 1 when the Election Commission (EC) announced the dates for nomination and voting.
“At the moment, all rooms from Nov 1 until 17 have been fully booked, ” she said.
Homestay owner Ee Yeok Eng, 62, said almost all the rooms in his house had been taken up for the two weeks leading to the voting day.
“I have about seven rooms in my homestay that can accommodate between two and six people each.
“There are only two rooms available now – a large one which can accommodate about four people and another small one that can only fit two people, ” he said.
Before the by-election, he said most of the homestays here had been affected by the recent closure of the Kukup International Ferry Terminal.
“This place has been quiet for the past few weeks following the closure. I am glad that visitors are coming again, ” said Ee, who has been running the homestay in Kampung Nelayan Air Masin Kukup for the last 10 years.
Another homestay owner, Ghazali Ahmad, 48, said all four of his houses were booked for the by-election.
“I have been getting calls even before the EC announced the nomination and voting dates.
“They are mostly from members or supporters of political parties involved in the by-election campaign and enforcement officers on standby, ” he said.
Johor Tourism, Women, Family and Community Development Committee Chairman Liow Cai Tung said the by-election was expected to help boost the tourism industry in Tanjung Piai.
The Tanjung Piai by-election is fixed for Nov 16, with the nomination day on Nov 2 and early voting on Nov 12.
The by-election was called after the seat fell vacant following the death of incumbent Datuk Dr Md Farik Md Rafik on Sept 21.
In the 14th General Election last year, Dr Md Farid of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia defeated Datuk Seri Wee Jeck Seng of MCA and Nordin Othman of PAS.