Malaysian hotels react to hotel sex video fallout


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (eTN) – As the Malaysian public and tourism industry take in the fallout from a sex video scandal that has caused the downfall and immediate resignation of a high political figure, Malaysian hotels has been put on guard over the possible liabilities such scandals may affect the country’s tourism industry.

Dr. Chua Soi Lek, former Malaysian health minister, tendered his resignation from all government and party posts after admitting he was the person shown in two sex video recordings made after four cameras were installed in a hotel room he had occupied with a female friend.

The police have started investigations to determine the source of the recordings, said Ismail Omar, deputy inspector-general of police. “We are tracing the culprits behind the video recordings, including those responsible for installation of the spy cameras, duplication of discs and distribution of the recordings.”

The sex video recordings, said to be almost two hours long, has put the country’s hospitality industry in a bad light, just as the Visit Malaysia Year campaign is being extended due to its impressive results.

Advising the public not to be “unduly worried” over the unwanted publicity, Sarjit Singh, executive director of the Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH), said, “We want to assure hotel guests their security and privacy are guaranteed.”

All 400 MAH members will be reminded to be wary of irresponsible persons installing spy cameras in hotel rooms, said Sarjit.

Added Shahruddin Saaid, executive of Malaysian Association of Hotel Owners, the recording done in a Batu Pahat hotel room in Johor state was a “bizarre” case.

The incident may have also been one incident that has “fallen through the cracks” as local governments, authorities and building owners turn more and more towards installation of camera video recordings to tighten security measures.

“More and more cameras will be installed in building foyers, lobbies, lifts, car parks and around building premises, including hotels for security surveillance,” added Sarjit. “If spy cameras are installed in hotel rooms, then they are obviously doing it against ethics and regulations.”

Hotel managements, added Sarjit, should be on the lookout for individuals, including hotel staff, who might be in collusion with perpetrators by attempting to breach hotel guests’ privacy. “The incident which occurred in a hotel room of a four-star hotel is an invasion of privacy.”