August 11, 2016
LABUAN – The once glorious and well-known hotel in this island, Hotel Labuan is still standing tall today at Merdeka Road, but with different look after being abandoned for so long.
After its operation ceased in November 1997, there is no obvious decision is made to either demolish the building or developing it for other project.
Labuan Member of Parliament, Datuk Rozman Isli who spoke to Labuan Times recently told that the hotel and its land that was owned by the government had actually sold it through ministry of finance (MOF) to the first bidder.
“After the first bidder (an Australian based company) did not perform, then, the second bidder (Sabah based company) who bid for RM14 million was awarded for the project.
“However, I was informed that they were facing some technical issues at this moment,” he said.
Meanwhile, a senior officer at Labuan Corporation spoke that the issue regarding Hotel Labuan and its land was under MOF administration.
“The agreement to redevelop the area is yet signed while waiting for the new land title to be reissued. It will take some time, as it is not under Labuan Corporation authority.
“If it was under Labuan Corporation then I believe the issue is already settled long time ago. We did ask MOF for many times to resolve the matter as soon as possible, as we do not want to see the abandoned building without any action being done to redevelop the area.
“Most people blame Labuan Corporation, but it is not under our authority to resolve the matter. What we can do is to push to accelerate its redevelopment project,” he said, adding that after the land title was reissued, only then the agreement could be signed.
After the oil and gas sector was slowing down here in this island, Rozman was giving his focus to strengthen the tourism industry together with his vision to make this island as an educational hub in the region.
The abandoned hotel seemed to be a challenge for him to develop tourism sector in Labuan Island.
However, there are nine groups of tourist from China made their visit on one-night stay package here in this island in this August where the first group comprising some 108 tourists have set their feet on Labuan from Kota Kinabalu on August 9.