— Regular users have applauded the decision of the federal government to ensure that the iconic Penang ferry service continues to operate.
Eng Zei Pei, 32, said he was relieved by the announcement because he felt that the 126-year-old ferry service should be preserved as the state’s tourist attraction.
“Who wouldn’t be sad if the service of the iconic symbol of this state is terminated. It will be a big loss. But, now I am relieved … this (decision) I think (was made by) taking into account all views. That’s good,” he told Bernama today.
A check by Bernama at the Sultan Abdul Halim Ferry Terminal near Butterworth found vehicle owners still flocking to use the ferry service to cross over to the island.
Another user, Hazlina Aimi Kamarudin, 28, said taking the ferry was faster as her workplace is located near the Raja Tun Uda Ferry Terminal near here.
“If the ferry (service) is terminated, it will be difficult … commuting via the (Penang) bridge is something that I want to avoid because my workplace is close to the ferry terminal on the island,” she said, adding that using the ferry could save travel time by 20 minutes.
A pensioner, D. Veerapan, 68, hailed the government’s decision to continue the service, saying it is a safer method of transportation for motorists and motorcyclists.
The Penang Port Commission had announced that the ferry service will be replaced by speedboats from Jan 1 while one of the ferries will be used to transport only bicycles and motorcycles.
However, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz said yesterday that the commission would have to continue the ferry service, which is considered the state’s heritage.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency