Safety first, says Sabah CM on cancelled flights due to Mount Ruang volcanic eruption

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KOTA KINABALU, April 18 —The cancellations of flights in and out of Sabah following the eruption of Mount Ruang in north Sulawesi, Indonesia have affected some 20,000 passengers, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said today.

He said that the relevant agencies from the state were closely monitoring the situation and the effects of Indonesia’s Mt Ruang volcanic eruptions.

“I have been briefed about the situation and we are keeping tab. Safety is a priority and it is important that we prioritise the safety of the people,” he said.

He said more than 20,000 passengers were affected following the suspension of all scheduled flights coming in and out of airports in Kota Kinabalu, Labuan, Tawau and Sandakan today.

Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Christina Liew has also called on the parties affected by the suspension of flights, including tourists travelling to or leaving Sabah to have patience while they wait for the aftereffects to settle down.

It was reported that the Mount Ruang eruption in North Sulawesi province, Indonesia on Wednesday evening has shot ash plumes nearly 70,000 feet high.

“Be patient. The magnitude of the phenomenon was unforeseen and beyond our control. However, the government is monitoring the situation closely,” Liew said in a statement earlier today.

Malaysia Airlines said that they have cancelled 19 scheduled flights in and out of Sabah and Sarawak following the incident.