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New Transport Minister wants to solve MH370 and reduce road deaths

SEREMBAN: Reduce road fatalities and solve the MH370 mystery – these are the immediate priorities for Transport Minister-designate Anthony Loke Siew Fook (pic). Loke, who will be sworn in on Monday (May 21), said he has already instructed ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Saripuddin Kasim to give him a comprehensive briefing when he clocks in on Tuesday (May 22). “I am looking forward to Tuesday as there are many important matters that need to be looked into immediately,” said the Seremban MP when met at the Then Sze Koon temple here.

“Since we are already in the month of Ramadan, we will first need to come up with effective measures to reduce road accidents and fatalities as people are going to be returning to their home towns for Hari Raya,” he said. Loke, 41, also expressed hope that the mystery into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 will be resolved soon, to provide closure to families of the 239 people on board. “I hope the ministry will be able to bring closure to the families of those on board as well as resolve one of the biggest mysteries in the aviation industry during my tenure,” he said.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft vanished on March 8, 2014 after departing from the KL International Airport on a flight to Beijing, China. A massive search operation in the southern Indian Ocean, coordinated by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, was mounted but suspended in January last year. In January this year, the Malaysian Government entered into an agreement with US-based private firm Ocean Infinity to conduct a 90-day underwater search in an area considered the most likely location for the wreckage.

The search is reportedly expected to end in early June. Loke said he was aware that he had a big responsibility as Transport Minister. “It is a huge ministry including road transport, aviation, rail, maritime, ports and logistics.

“Although I have been an MP for 10 years, I am here to learn and will adopt an open attitude so that we can together steer the country to greater heights,” he said, adding that port management was also important as it facilitated economic growth. Loke also hoped to get the full support from civil servants to be able to effectively carry out his duties. “I do not hold any grudge against anyone and want bygones to be bygones.

“This is a new beginning and we all have our responsibilities to make this nation more prosperous,” he added.



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