KUALA LUMPUR: Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai confirmed the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) has sent a team to Madagascar to identify a piece of debris believed to be from the missing aircraft MH370.
According to Berita Harian, Liow said this was in line with the standard operating procedure (SOP) with regards to the matter.
“Yes we have been contacted by the authorities in Madagascar to inform us on the debris,” he said.
Meanwhile, with regards to the murder of Malaysian consul Zahid Reza in Madagascar last month, Liow said it was better for Malaysia to send officers there rather than to have the debris transported back here.
Liow also asked the public not to speculate and to link Zahid’s death to MH370.
“Do not make any speculations. I don’t think his death is connected to MH370. Let the police investigate. The debris was not necessarily transported by him (Zahid), it could have been sent here via a courier service,” Liow was quoted as saying by Berita Harian.
It was previously reported that Zahid was taked with transporting pieces of suspected MH370 debris to investigators in Malaysia.
He was shot to death in Antananarivo, Madagascar on Aug 24, thus fueling conspiracy theories on the ill-fated aircraft.
Blaine Gibson, an American adventurer-detective who has been gathering suspected MH370 wreckage was reported by the New Zealand Herald last week as saying that Zahid had been due to deliver new items to Malaysian investigators in Kuala Lumpur.
Gibson claimed he too had been receiving death threats, which is why the timing of Zahid’s murder rattled him, according to the news report.
“For the protection of those involved we decided not to make this report public until the debris was safely delivered to Malaysia.
“However tragic events have intervened. Under the agreement between the two countries, debris is supposed to be collected by Hon. Zahid Raza, the Honorary Malaysian Consul in Madagascar, and delivered by private courier to Malaysia.
“On August 24, the Hon. Zahid Raza was assassinated in Antananarivo,” Gibson had written on his blog.
DCA director-general Datuk Azharuddin Abdul Rahman last week said it was not a wise thing to speculate on Zahid’s murder.
He informed that the matter was being investigated by the relevant authorities. – MO