IPOH: Pangkor folk are demanding the smaller Sungai Pinang jetty on the island to be reopened to ease travels to and from the mainland.
Pangkor Local Chinese Duty Free Issues Negotiation Committee representative Tan Chin Kee said the jetty has been the islanders' preferred point of entry and exit for traversing between Pangkor and the Perak mainland.
He said the jetty had been closed earlier this year, in conjunction with the start of the Pangkor Duty Free initiative.
"With the closure of the jetty, we have to contend with visitors at the main Pangkor jetty.
"It is such an inconvenience, as the jetty will be congested," he said when handing over a memorandum to Perak Mentri Besar's special adviser Datuk Zainol Fadzi Paharuddin on Wednesday (Jan 22).
Tan said the government should not only provide services to the tourists and forget about the locals.
"They should look after our needs, too.
"The Sungai Pinang jetty should not have been closed in the name of development," he said.
"We need an alternative jetty to travel between the island and the mainland and not having to contend with tourists at main jetty.
Another islander, Marco Foo Yong Hooi, said they were not against the duty free initiative, but needed more time to adapt to the new travelling arrangement.
"It's such a hassle having to go through the Customs checkpoint like tourists.
"There are about 12,000 people on the island. We really hope and want the Sungai Pinang jetty to be opened permanently," he said, adding that they have collected some 3,000 signatures for the memorandum.
It is learned that a letter had been issued by the Manjung District Council, stating that the smaller jetty would be opened from Jan 23 to 27.
Zainol said he would deliver the memorandum to the Mentri Besar.
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