KUALA TERENGGANU: Malaysian authorities on Saturday (Aug 17) expanded the search area for a Singaporean kayaker who went missing in Johor waters to 300 square nautical miles, from waters off Kemaman to Kuala Terengganu.
The search and rescue operation (SAR) entered its ninth day after Singaporeans Tan Eng Soon, 62, and Puah Geok Tin, 57, were reported missing in waters off Mersing in Johor on Aug 8. Ms Puah's body was found on Wednesday in waters off Kuala Kemaman.
The search for Mr Tan was previously narrowed on Friday to the waters between Kemanan and Merchang in Marang, after a body with a life jacket strapped to it was reportedly sighted in Dungun waters the day before.
Terengganu state maritime director Muhammad Suffi Mohd Ramli said 60 people from various agencies including the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA), police, fire and rescue department and Malaysian Civil Defence Force were involved in Saturday's operation, which began at 8am.
"The SAR operation which is being coordinated by the MMEA today also involves four boats belonging to various security agencies," he said in a statement.
"The victim's next-of-kin and representatives of the Singapore consulate are present at the Kemaman Maritime Zone jetty to keep up with the latest developments."
MMEA also called on all seafarers and members of the public with any information about the incident to inform the authorities.
Mr Tan's son, Jeremy, on Thursday urged authorities to continue the search for his father.
"So far up to this point, we are very grateful for all the help and support by the MFA (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), by the Malaysia maritime police department. We hope that in the coming days, they can continue to maintain the search effort as my father is still missing," he had said.