KOTA KINABALU: Mountain guides should respect their profession and not bring politics into the workplace, said Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment, Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun.
He said there was no rule against persons, who are not mountain guides, to unfurl a flag on Mount Kinabalu.
However, Masidi said the three Mount Kinabalu guides were working when they unfurled the flag of Parti Warisan Sabah (Warisan) on the mountain.
He said this when asked to comment on the three Mount Kinabalu guides, who have been suspended from work until the end of May, following photograph of them posing with the Warisan flag that has gone viral on social media.
Sabah Parks director Dr Jamili Nais, in a statement, said action was taken not because the
guides supported an opposition party, but because they had failed to differentiate between work and politics.
Dr Jamili said it was not right to bring political sentiments into the workplace for Sabah Parks staff and mountain guides – who are freelancers given licences by the park – especially when tourists were involved.
Masidi said the issue of whether the suspension was too harsh was not important.
“There are rules to be followed,” he said.
He also said Dr Jamili’s statement was self-explanatory, in which he indicated that
action would be taken against anyone irrespective of whether the flag was supporting the government or otherwise.
“What he said is that they should not bring politics into the workplace.”