Tourism Minister should support the world’s tallest Mazu (Goddess of Sea) statue project in Kudat

The Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor should support the world’s tallest Mazu (Goddess of the Sea) statue project in Kudat as it will be economically good for Sabah and Malaysia by enhancing the nation’s international tourism competitiveness.

Although Tan Sri Chong Kat Kiat has yet to publicly disclose the reasons for his shock resignation as Deputy Chief Minister and State Minister for Tourism, Culture and Environment on April 13, his oblique reference to resigning over “a matter of principle” raises the question as to whether his resignation concerned the interests of the state, his party or individual self.

Public speculation over his resignation had zeroed on two issues, viz:

Firstly, his being forced to “eat dead cat” or unfairly to take the blame for the development of Pulau Sipadan which damaged the unique coral reef of one of the top five diving spots in the world. As a result, it attracted public criticism of the Prime Minister when the Federal Government was embarrassed by the despoliation of the fragile ecosystem of Sipadan which was first exposed and reported internationally by environmental groups. However, it was the Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Musa Aman, who must bear responsibility for the plans to develop Sipadan.

Secondly, Chong’s differences with Musa over the former’s plan to build the world’s tallest Mazu (Goddess of the Sea) statue in Kudat which will be a tourist and economic boon for the district, Sabah and Malaysia in enhancing our international tourist competitiveness by drawing tourists from China, Taiwan and Japan.

I understand land for the world’s tallest Mazu statue as well as donations exceeding RM5 million have been pledged, and that parts for the construction of the Mazu statue are being shipped to Sabah.

Although the world’s tallest Mazu statue in Kudat had been mooted by Chong, it is a project which is bigger than one person when it is for the good of the larger community — whether Kudat, Sabah or Malaysia.

For this reason, I propose to meet Tengku Adnan to urge him to support the project to build the world’s tallest Mazu, which will not only be a bonus to Malaysia’s campaign to promote tourism but will also be a symbol of the “Instant Asia” publicity which had been the staple of Malaysia’s tourism promotion in the world.

[Speech (2) at DAP Sandakan dinner-talk at Tyng Garden Hotel Restaurant, Mile 5, Sandakan on Sunday, 29th April 2007]

  1. #1 by Jeffrey on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 9:36 am

    Being publicly criticized by PM and unfairly blamed for CM’s project in Pulau Sipadan and tourism are factors but I suspect, on a personal level, Tan Sri Chong Kat Kiat may be a religious man – I notice from photographs that he wore on the wrist one of the yellow strings that has religious significance – and could have made pledges to build the world’s tallest Mazu (Goddess of the Sea) statue in Kudat to not only devotees but possibly the Diety itself. Admittedly having such a spectacular statute will be a tourist attraction. One recalls how the spectacular sea temple in Tanah Lot, Bali is such a popular tourist destination. The other point is how does it stand in relation to Islam being official religion. Well one of the first precept of Rukunegara is belief in God ) not confined to Muslims only). Take more Islamic Kelantan in which Kampung Tok’kong is known for a historically significant Chinese Temple known as Seng Choon Keong. The temple is dedicated to the worship of the Goddess Mazu. The temple is approximately 20 to 30 years old. Every year on the equivalent date to the 23rd of March on the Chinese Calendar, the birthday of Mazu is commemorated. Chinese, especially Mazu followers go there to pay homage to Mazu, and to offer prayers for health and wealth, as well as for personal safety and security. Mazu is the Goddess of the Sea. … Kelantan’s history often involves the sea, and boats, as does Sabah where many depend on the sea for livelihood and respect its vagaries and depend on Mazu to protect them.

  2. #2 by k1980 on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 10:13 am

    Let’s be frank about the “pivotal” race’s sensitivities in Bolehland– the only structure the BN will ever allow to be built in Kudat, or for that matter, elsewhere in this Islamic country, is a replica of the Ka’aba

  3. #3 by Sergei on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 11:58 am

    Very well fellow non-earthlings.

    Think out of the box, if our efforts are not appreciated in this country, keep it to ourselves or bring it to our neighbouring countries.

    We do that to our employers, don’t you? We would normally find another job that allow us to perform and appreciated.

    Singapore has just offered 50% discounts on their selected attractions and here we are felt treatened in a Visit Malaysia Year.

    We can’t even stand up to competition in this Bolehland. Are you proud to be a Bolehlander?

    The world knows and some of these citizens are already boycotting Bolehland. In-bound tourism has not risen today is a testament.

    Which stats do you trust? Tourism Malaysia figures or local hoteliers figures. Ha Ha Ha.

  4. #4 by pulau_sibu on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 12:18 pm

    I disagree on this kind of mentality of buidling world tallest this and that. Don’t you think Petronas Towers are more than enough? This is just the mentality of orang kampong. On what ground are we sure that the tourists will come because of the statue? If it would work as suggested, we can build one and perhaps more than one in Sibu in order to attract tourists. It is not just Sibu, every city in the world would do it.

    If you shift Jerusalem and Mecca or Medina to boleh, then it would be a different story. You will get a lot of pilgrims each year without doing anything.

  5. #5 by unsatisfied on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 12:38 pm

    Well i don’t think this will happen. BN will only built statues of Keris but Mazu, i don’t think so.

  6. #6 by ihavesomethingtosay on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 3:59 pm

    Why waste money building the world’s tallest Mazhu statue in Sabah, when we can better spend the money building a GIANT AAB in taman negara, tallest, yet no one can see.

  7. #7 by megaman on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 4:36 pm

    no point toking anymore …

    as times goes by … more n more will leave … the ones left will be less and less … very soon .. the chinese in Msia would be insignificant n powerless to do anything becoz they lack the numbers and the political strength …

    u can tok until the cows go home n u can shout until ur voice box crack … nothing gonna change …

    I came to this scary conclusion after toking to several overseas msian chinese n ppl tat hav emigrated out … mind you .. these r very smart n intelligent ppl that holds hi positions n good qualifications …

    They’ve pointed out the statistics n facts n I m dumbstruck … din realize tat it has reached the point of no return …

    the chinese in Msia is already marginalized by the Malays …
    And the Malays themselves r already marginalized in the world …
    but nobody seems to understand this … seems like Msia is one big tempurung wif a lot of blind n deaf kataks underneath …

    I weep n I m sad … but knowing the best pragmatic way I can secure my family’s future lies overseas … I will now make the necessary arrangements … I have studied overseas n now working overseas … but have always harbored the desire to return n settle down back in Msia … but now, I guess it’s best I make do wif wat I have overseas n move my family out …

  8. #8 by DiaperHead on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 6:20 pm

    If Malaysia wants the world to get noticed, it should consider building the statue of Osama bin Ladin; and it does not have the be the tallest structure anywhere but just his statue.

    Imagine the savings in terms of foreign exchange since the statue would probably have to be built with the help of Chinese sculptors from China and by some famous Chinese sculptor and with materials imported from China.

    Since all I read on this blog is about concern for poverty in Sabah, wouldn’t it be right, fair and consistent to use this money to help fight poverty among Sabah’s less fortunate and disadvantaged?

  9. #9 by DiaperHead on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 6:28 pm

    Talking about ‘world class statues’ to attract tourism, why not build statues of the three famous monkeys – except that these ones would not be “See no evil, Speak no evil, Hear no evil” labels beneath them.

    Instead we should have a 3-faced orang utan say: “I never heard that, let me look into it, who said that?”

  10. #10 by wong_kah_teng on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 7:44 pm

    this statue is build by chinese community, not the government.

  11. #11 by sheriff singh on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 8:09 pm

    What do Pashtuns know or care about Mahzu? Didn’t their Afghan brothers blow up some ancient 1,700 year old Buddhist statues in Bamiyan?

  12. #12 by DiaperHead on Monday, 30 April 2007 - 8:42 pm

    “This statue is build by chinese community, not the government.” wong

    That makes it even worse! The Chinese community is prepared to spend vast sums of money on a statue? Instead of giving back to the community by helping to reduce widespread poverty in the state of Sabah?

    I doubt if tourists would come from afar to a place like Sabah just to glare at a statue. If building statues are the way to attract tourist dollars, then consider building one in honor of the three monkeys – a close relation of the orang utan.

  13. #13 by sotong on Tuesday, 1 May 2007 - 7:17 am

    Thanks to our leaders/politicians, our country is left behind with rampant corruption, gross mismanagement, race relationship is at its worst, religious intolerance, widening gap between the rich and poor and many more.

    Everyone, all races, is affected one way or another. There is no quick fix.

  14. #14 by Jonny on Tuesday, 1 May 2007 - 10:07 am

    While we’re here, why not the biggest cross being built in Sabah? Largest and biggest. After all, it used to be a Christian state [deleted].

  15. #15 by kelangman88 on Tuesday, 1 May 2007 - 11:05 am

    Blasphemy. There’s only one Ka’aba. Cannot build more than that. Maybe build the biggest mosque lar. How about mosque that is as big as city? That will entice more people to pray

  16. #16 by pamelaoda on Tuesday, 1 May 2007 - 11:23 am

    To Sotong,

    I read from Malaysia-today, sombody posted tat, Chinese is to be blamed for the corruption now in M’sia. V bought the culture from China wiz us when v landed on tis land of melayu…V r the bad one, so the melayu just learn from us.
    Although comments in Malaysia today r full of craps (no offence to a small percentage of matured readers) it is scary to read some of those unrealistics and childish comments posted by these kataks. These are the same bunch of ppl tat wld die and create havoc for BN!

  17. #17 by k1980 on Tuesday, 1 May 2007 - 9:58 pm

    The Chinese is to be blamed for the corruption now in M’sia? Then how come the British Labor Party was caught selling awards for money and the American head of the World Bank, Paul the Wolfman, caught promoting his concubine using the tactics of the NEP? The British and the Americans learned corruption from the Chinese?

  18. #18 by tiger on Wednesday, 2 May 2007 - 12:28 am


  19. #19 by pamelaoda on Wednesday, 2 May 2007 - 8:27 am

    Yes K1980,

    I know it is “absurd n can u believe educated malay can comment “I m malay, i m from kedah, i m proud to be a racist! U cina can go back to TongSan if u don like it here”. (something like tat cos I cant remember each and every words) Then the cyber war started which i do not want to read anymore.. This racist uses the name Tok Zam Zaki or somthin like tat and he even said he can speak good english…”six sax mai” if u can understand canto!

    It is just an additional stream to read articles but not for discussing or posting.

  20. #20 by deng on Thursday, 3 May 2007 - 4:50 pm

    this countrys official religion is islam. just accept that. if truly a bangsa malaysia. tq

You must be logged in to post a comment.