Tuesday, June 25, 2013

'Keep night market open' - Jonker Street Malacca

Closing tourist site can affect tourism, says Nazri

KUALA LUMPUR: Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz wants the Malacca government to reconsider its decision to close down the state's popular tourist destination, Jonker Walk night market.

"Malacca is a well-known tourist spot and closing the Jonker Walk night market could affect the tourist numbers," he told a press conference at the Parliament lobby here yesterday.

He also said the state highly depended on tourism as it was one of the main economic boosters with its many hotels and other tourist attractions.

"If traffic is a concern, the state can perhaps come up with solutions, such as providing parking spaces that do not congest Jonker Street or provide buses to avoid the double parking which causes jams along the road."

Locals and tourists walking through the busy Jonker Walk night market in search of delicacies and bargains. Residents living in the area say the popular tourist spot causes massive traffic congestion.

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The state government had decided on June 12 to close down the night market to allow for a smoother traffic flow.

MCA Youth chief Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong described the closure as unjustifiable and added that it would affect the state's economy.

"Jonker Street has been there for years and it is a popular spot for tourists.

"I really cannot find any justification to close it.

"Perhaps we should look at the bigger picture, but for now, there is no strong reason to close it.

"It is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Malacca and it generates a lot of revenue for the state and country," Dr Wee added at the Parliament lobby here yesterday.

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