Wan Junaidi takes his hat off to Oknyha Datuk Dr Othsman Hassan

The Malaysian ex-detainees boarding the aircraft for Kuching at Siem Reap International Airport.

Photos courtesy of Santubong MP Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Wan Jafaar

KUCHING, Feb 18: The Cambodian official who was instrumental in getting the 47 Malaysians home yesterday is Minister of Special Functions in the Cambodian Prime Minister’s Department HE Oknyha Datuk Dr Othsman Hassan.

Santubong MP Dato Sri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Wan Jaafar, who was one of delegates in the rescue mission, said in a statement today that Othsman helped facilitate the passage to freedom for the 40 from Sarawak, 3 (Sabah) and 3 (Selangor) and one (Kuala Lumpur), who had been squatting in a provincial prison since December last year.

Othsman (standing, second from right) in a group photo with the ex-detainees. Wan Junaidi is seated at right, Fatimah (on Wan Junaidi’s right), Deddy Faisal (seated, left) and others.
Wan Junaidi (seated, right) with Othsman (seated, left) at the latter’s MPV. Also seen in the picture is Fatimah.

The successful mission to bring home the boys and girls was headed by Minister of Welfare, Community Well-Being, Women, Family and Childhood Development Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah.

Also in the team was the Foreign Ministry’s Sarawak regional office director Deddy Faisal Ahmed Salleh, who played his role well, said Wan Junaidi.

Fatimah in a group photo with (from right) Deddy Faisal, Wan Junaidi, Othsman and others.
The ex-detainees in a photo call with Fatimah, Wan Junaidi (right) and Deddy Faisal (left) inside the chartered plane from JC International Airlines.

The Kuching International Airport (KIA) was a scene of emotional re-unions as families, friends and the 40 ex-detainees shedded tears of joy and relief when they returned home using a chartered flight, which was paid for by the Sarawak government, from Siem Reap International Airport, Cambodia.

The 47 Malaysians had been detained at Banteay Meachey provincial prison since December 11 last year for alleged illegal online gambling. On Feb 13, Julau MP Larry Sng led several reporters and family members to meet them at the prison.

The following day, Fatimah led the successful rescue mission to Siem Reap. — DayakDaily