The Malaysian government must seriously consider funding a new MH370 search
The Malaysian Government must give full and satisfactory response to serious allegations made in the international media that it had withheld crucial data that could help find the missing MH370 from the Australian authorities and independent aviation and data experts involved in the search.
The Australian news website News.com.au is one of the international media which had made these shocking allegations.
In an exclusive article, the Australian website said: “If you assumed those tasked with finding this needle in a haystack had been given every piece of information available to solve what is now regarded as the greatest aviation mystery in history, you would be wrong.
“News.com.au can reveal that Malaysia withheld, and continues to withhold, from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) and consulting experts, vital radar data containing possible clues to the location of the Boeing 777 – or what is left of it.”
The search for the Malaysia Airlines jet, which went missing en route to Beijing, China from Kuala Lumpur on March 8, 2014, officially ended on Tuesday after the search party failed to find any sign of the plane in a 12,000 sq km section of the Southern Indian Ocean.
The article also alleged that the Malaysian authorities were negligent and befuddled in the crucial hours after the plane went off radar.
It quoted two independent investigators of MH370’s disappearance – American Victor Iannello and British Don Thompson – who concurred they have been denied access to data that could more accurately pinpoint the plane’s location.
Thompson told the website that military long-range air defence surveillance data from eight military sites across four nations, was not shared with the ATSB.
“Those satellites, all within range of MH370’s flight path – any one of them, or all collectively, could provide vital clues to the plane’s whereabouts. ”
There were also discrepancies and inconsistencies in evidence relating to the flight path, that was shown to victims’ families, and was never made available to official investigators, said the report.
One such data was presented by the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s Lt-Gen Ackbal Abdul Samad to victims’ families in Beijing, China, that placed the flight in the Malacca Straits, it added. This data was also reportedly not shared with ATSB.
“A full copy of the MH370 data communications log has never been made public. The version released has been heavily edited by authorities.
“The existence of telephone records indicating First Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid’s mobile phone connected to a tower on Penang Island were initially denied by Malaysia,” the report pointed out, adding that authorities however, later admitted the event had occurred.
“Details of this midair call have never been made public.”
The ending of the search of MH370 is become embroiled in increasing international controversy.
With growing allegations on irresponsible and incompetent handling of the major air disaster by the Malaysian authorities, a question that must be decided is whether Malaysia should fund a new MH370 search.
The families of the MH370 victims are in grave disagreement with the tripartite decision of Malaysia, Australia and China of 17th January to suspend the search for MH370.
They condemned the requirement for a “precise location”, calling it “at best an erroneous expectation, and at worst a clever formulation to bury the search”。
I call on the Malaysian government to answer the specific question haunting all concerned whether the two-and-half-year search had been looking in the wrong area.
How can the Malaysian government expect Malaysians or the victims’ families to accept that passengers of the national airline can just disappear into thin air?
The Malaysian Government should seriously consider funding a new MH370 search!