Friday, October 18

Family members of Abu Sayyaf hostages appeal for help

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Family members of the hostages appealing for help.

Family members of the hostages appealing for help.

SIBU: Despair is setting in for the families of the four Malaysian hostages held captive by Abu Sayyaf as they cannot afford to pay their ransom.

Last Monday (Apr 18), one of the hostages, Wong Teck Kang, made a call to his father, Wong Chee Ming, telling him to prepare the ransom money in exchange for their safety.

According to Chee Ming, the money had to be converted into Philippine pesos and delivered to the middlemen who would transfer it to the militants in exchange for their children’s lives.

“It has been 22 days since our children are abducted and to date, we are not getting any form of help or any kind of statement from the relevant authorities with regards to the safety of our children. This is a very desperate wait,” a statement issued by the family members said.

The family members said they had also sought advice from the prime minister through the help of Bintulu MP Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing and had also sought the advice from Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem through the arrangement of Second Finance Minister Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh’s assistance.

“However, until today, we have not heard of anything from the government on the progress or whether there are any negotiations going on with the kidnappers.”

On April 2, four Malaysian seamen, all from Sibu – Wong Teck Kang, 35, and his brother Teck Chii, 29, Johnny Lau, 21 and Wong Hung Sing, 23, – were kidnapped by the eight Abu Sayyaf gunmen who boarded their tugboat about 100km from Tawau.