LAST_UPDATEWed, 18 Jul 2018 11pm

Greater Things In Store For Langkawi With BN At Helm

Pic: BernamaPic: BernamaLANGKAWI: Langkawi has always been one of the country's leading tourist destinations and during a visit here, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak vowed to take the resort island to greater heights while giving his assurance that the well-being of its residents will continue to be taken care of under the Barisan Nasional (BN) watch.

 The Prime Minister spent Friday and Saturday criss-crossing the idyllic island for well-received engagements with multiple communities representing its Indian, Chinese as well as Malay population.

Pahang-born Najib had previously said that he was the prime minister for all Malaysians, and in Langkawi, he proved this once again as he announced an allocation of RM1.315 billion for projects that would benefit the islanders – including RM600 million earmarked to address the water supply problem.

“I am not from Kedah but I still give fair and preferential consideration to Kedah and Langkawi Island as a whole,” he said at one of the events.

Kuah State Assemblyman Nor Saidi Nanyan told Bernama that Najib’s commitment to uplift the image of Langkawi and the socio-economic levels of its people had been consistent since he became prime minister.

“We need development here, 70 per cent of Langkawi residents depend on the tourism sector. Thus, what has been planned cannot be stopped, it needs to be continued so that the island is more organised and manageable,” he said.

Under the Najib administration, plans have been hatched and even implemented in stages  to further boost Langkawi's tourism sector, such as the Langkawi Tourism Blueprint 2.0, a master plan for the island’s tourism development for 2016-2020.

The government has also set its sights on expanding the Langkawi international airport and getting more direct flights to the duty-free island mentioned by Malaysian-born actress Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh in the Star Trek television series, stirring excitement among Malaysians and the video clip going viral on social media.

Drawing more world-class hotels to operate in Langkawi is another strategy being pursued by the government to attract well-to-do travellers to the island off the coast of northern Peninsular Malaysia.

Najib also put Langkawi on the diplomatic map when the legendary island was picked to co-host the 26th ASEAN Summit along with Kuala Lumpur, back in 2015.

Langkawi residents have further reason to cheer as, apart from the RM600 million water supply project, Najib unveiled plans to build an additional building for the Langkawi Hospital with an allocation of RM500 million, quarters for health staff ((RM135 million), a new fire and rescue station as well as living quarters in Padang Matsirat (RM30 million), and upgrading of Jalan Bulatan Lapangan Terbang-Pulapol  Langkawi (RM50 million).

The new hospital building will be equipped with 220 beds, wards for intensive care and coronary unit, as well as other facilities.

Najib is well aware that a former prime minister now in the opposition camp is eyeing the possibility of standing in the Langkawi parliamentary constituency in the upcoming general election.

But he drove home the point that with a proven track record of service and dedication to Malaysians all these years, only BN of which he is the chairman, was capable of fulfilling its vows to the people.

He cautioned that opting for an MP from a party that had no strength to form a government would do no favours for the people of Langkawi.

“An individual, no matter how popular the person was before, cannot bring changes without a strong party behind him,” he said.