I received an official call from Mr. Guna, the investigating officer for our complaints against Sutera Sanctuary Lodges on the ridiculous pricing of climbing Mount Kinabalu starting from 2008. For the other 15 complaints that had been submitted (thanks for those who submitted the complaints), you will get a similar call from him soon.
Basically, this was his explanation:
1. Prior to 2003, the accommodation in Laban Rata was managed by Sabah Parks, i.e under direct supervision of Sabah State Government.
2. Starting from 2003, Sabah State Government privatized the management of the accommodation for climbers at Laban Rata, in which, Sutera Sanctuary Lodges have to pay the Sabah State Government RM1.5 million a year. The contract is that Sutera will have to run the place for 30 years.
3. In return, Sutera Sanctuary Lodges will have to manage, maintain, upgrade and do anything that is necessary to make sure the accommodation on the mountain is managed properly.
4. Sutera claimed that for 5 years (from 2003-2007), they never increased the rate. So, in 2008, without any good justification, they decided to increase the price to more than 300% as they wish. They claimed that the cost of running the place is increasing.
5. That is why they published ridiculous pricing structure starting from January 2008, without prior notice to the climbers.
So, are you happy with his explanation?
Further discussion with Mr. Guna revealed that KPDNHEP cannot do much to help us on this increase in the cost of accommodation at Laban Rata by Sutera Sanctuary Lodges.
What we can do now is complaint to the Sabah State Government, as they are the one who knows better about the situation…
Any feedback? Just drop in the comment box…