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Mamut tourist ban not my doing: Masidi
Published on: Thursday, May 26, 2016
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Ranau: The old Mamut Copper Mine lake situated about 16km from Ranau town has always been a restricted area imposed by the State Government, making entry to the area by the public prohibited under the law. State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun said it is the law of the land which makes it illegal for any activities to be held in the proximity of the mine's lake, more so if such activities are related to tourism purposes.

"We need to make a clarification on the matter regarding the Mamut mine's lake and its surrounding areas.

For safety as well as health reasons, the State Government had declared it as unsafe for public entry ever since the mine ceased operation there.

"Among others, the toxic content in the water in Mamut lake is very high and poses threat to health.

Thus it would be unwise for anyone to even be in the proximity of the lake," he said.

He said the State and Federal governments are still weighing on the best possible method to treat and resolve the problem so that any attempt to recover the area would not undermine the lives of people living in nearby areas.

Masidi, who is also Karanaan Assemblyman, said as long as the restriction order is still imposed, bringing tourists to the site is also strictly prohibited.

He said exceptions are for those doing research on the former mine after they are granted permission by the Ranau District Office.

He was responding to an incident recently where a group set up a tour package for visitors to go sightseeing near the Mamut lake via 4WD that was widely spread via WhatsApp.

"The question about me being the Tourism Minister to prevent any private company or individuals to bring tourists to that site does not surface. I am just reminding the public of the restriction order that has been in force for many years.

"I am very happy to see many of the Ranau locals involved in the various tourism industries in the district," he said.

"I am glad and always willing to help them as long as they don't go against the existing laws and regulations."

Masidi said he had to clarify so as to prevent any assumptions that being the Tourism Minister he was stopping people from bringing tourists to the area.



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