Explore heritage and tourism values beyond George Town, says exco man

IT is high time to explore the heritage and tourism values of places outside George Town, says state Tourism and Creative Economy Committee chairman Yeoh Soon Hin.


In view of this, the Khye Sian Ong Temple in Jelutong, which is said to be 200 years old, has been proposed to be gazzetted as a heritage building.


Yeoh, who visited the temple in Jelutong yesterday, said the Penang State Heritage commissioner Rosli Nor would be paying a visit to the temple to check its heritage value.


“From the stone artifacts kept in the temple, we can see that this temple has been in existence for 200 years.


“Thus, I will be bringing Rosli to come over here to check the possibilities of gazzetting and conferring it with the heritage status.


“We need to diversify the tourism products so that we are able to bring people out of George Town,” he added.

Yeoh said heritage and tourism when integrated, they help to enhance the livelihood of the locals

Yeoh said heritage and tourism are always interdependent, therefore it is important to continue in conserving and preserving Penang’s tangible and intangible cultural heritages.


“Heritage and tourism when integrated, they help to enhance the livelihood of the locals.


“For instance, when the temple (Khye Sian Ong Temple) gets the recognition as a heritage building, it would become a tourist attraction. This will then provide business opportunities for the traders in the vicinity of the temple and the Jelutong neighbourhood.


“Apart from that, we also would like to focus on community tourism,” he added.


Meanwhile, Khye Sian Ong Temple Committee chairman Jansen Lim Soon Hin suggested to Yeoh to develop Jelutong neighbourhood into a tourist attraction.

Khye Sian Ong Temple

“Along with the Khye Sian Ong Temple, there are other houses of worship in Jelutong such as a Hindu temple which can be turn into tourist attractions.


“I also believe that the Jelutong neighbourhood could be developed into a place for economic activities for tourism,” he added.

Lim speaking to media

Also present during the visit were state executive councillor for Non-Islamic Religious Affairs and Social Development Chong Eng, Sungai Pinang assemblyman Lim Siew Khim and George Town World Heritage Incorporated (GTWHI) general manager Dr Ang Ming Chee.


Story by Tanushalini Moroter

Pix by Tan Kean Ming