Monday, November 19, 2007
THE SIPITANG ESPLANADE
Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman and Datuk Sapawi bin Hj Ahmad
The construction of an esplanade in Sipitang district will not only give the district a major facelift but a new attraction for the coastal town thus bolstering its status as the transit town for visitors from Sarawak and Brunei Darussalam.
The RM10 million project initiated by the State government was launched by Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman on August 5, 2007. According to him, the esplanade measuring 452 metre long and 75 metre wide would attract more visitors from the neighbouring state and country to stop by before proceeding to other parts of Sabah.
According to him, the idea was mooted to him by Sindumin Assemblyman Datuk Sapawi Ahmad, who is also Assistant Finance Minister, about two years ago to which he promised to find ways to make it a reality.
Based on records, there is a rise in numbers of visitors entering Sabah at the border in Sinduman near Sipitang. Last year, there were 104,515 while up to June this year, 59,919 people passed through the border to enter Sabah.
For an ordinary person like me, who was born in Sipitang District, such project is timely due to the fact that “mega” project for a small town like Sipitang does not come very often. Beside its beautiful beach, weekly “tamu” and local fruits, Sipitang does not have much to offer the local tourists as well as foreign tourists. It is envisaged that the esplanade would become a major landmark and tourist attraction for Sipitang district.
Promoting Sipitang as a tourist destination rather than just a town for passers-by, requires other infrastructures such as reasonably good hotel accommodations, good transportation system, clean eateries and organised tamu ground.
I’m very sure the local authority and other related agencies are ready to receive influx of visitors and tourists to the district. Giving a good and lasting impression of Sipitang town to the visitors and tourists is one of the critical success factors in tourism industry.
Congratulations to Y.B. Datuk Sapawi bin Hj Ahmad for his effort to putting Sipitang in the tourism map of Malaysia.