Sabah kidnapping: No ransom calls have been made, says Esscom chief

Sabah kidnapping: No ransom calls have been made, says Esscom chief

KOTA KINABALU - No ransom calls have been made to either of the families of the two women abducted from the Singamata Reef Resort off Semporna on Wednesday.

Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) director-general Mohammad Mentek (pic) said that the only phone call was made to the family of Chinese tourist Gao Hua Yuan several hours after Gao and Filipina resort worker Marcy Darawan were kidnapped by seven gunmen at about 10.30pm on Wednesday.

"It was not a ransom call. From the information we have received, the caller just told the family that the two women were safe with them," Mohammad said, adding that Gao had also spoken to her family to say she was all right.

"Since then there have been no other calls based on our information," Mohammad said, explaining that intelligence reports received so far confirm that the women are "alive and safe" and that they were in an area in the southern Philippines.

With regard news reports in China and Hong Kong that Gao's family were planning to come to Sabah, state assistant Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming said the state had yet to be informed about the arrival of the family.

He said that if the family plan to come to Sabah, the Chinese consulate would inform the state to make the necessary arrangements.

"So far, we have not received any information about (Gao's) family coming to Sabah," he said.

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