MIRI: The Dangsanak Limbang Miri Welfare Organisation wants the government to review the airfares for the Limbang-Miri sector, which it says is a burden for those depending on the flights.
Chairman Sabtu Matali said lowering the airfare could be a short-term measure to reduce the burden of transportation costs borne by Limbang folk following strict cross-border procedures introduced by Brunei this month.
“Apart from lowering the price of airfare for the Limbang/Miri sector, we suggest that MASWings, the only airline operating the route, increase the frequency of flights,” he said in a statement.
“The strict cross-border procedure introduced by Brunei on Oct 1 has a negative impact on both the social and economic development of Limbang, which is surrounded by the Brunei border, and there is no alternative way out to Miri except using flights.”
Sabtu also called on the government to find ways to reduce Covid-19 test charges for those wishing to cross the border as well as to speed up test results.
He added the organisation fully supported the Sarawak government’s efforts to build the Sarawak Link Road, which would bypass Brunei as a long-term solution.
Organisation secretary Arman Mulok said the new restrictions made it difficult to commute from Miri to Limbang.
“We are not tourists, our purpose to Limbang is either for official matters and business, or family matters such as attending weddings, visiting the sick, and deceased relatives,” he explained.
He added although the new restrictions were a burden, the organisation respects the Brunei government’s actions to tighten its borders as part of efforts to stop Covid-19.
On Oct 1, the Brunei government introduced a Service Charge of B$3 (approximately RM9.30) for those who cross the Sarawak-Brunei land border.
There is also a Frequent Commuters Pass (FCP) with different rates for individuals and students.
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