SEPANG: The All Women Expedition to Antarctica (Aweta) mission to retrieve a time capsule buried in Antarctica in 2004 may be difficult due to surface changes, said Dr Sharifah Mazlina Syed Abdul Kadir, the person responsible for planting the capsule.
She said the location of the capsule might have changed or it had submerged after 14 years of being buried in the South Pole.
“To be honest, I think it is almost impossible for the three national ‘ice queens’ to bring home the capsule even though it is one of the main missions the expedition is undertaken.
“Other than having sunk, the position of the capsule may already be in the US Research Centre area because I planted it within a kilometre from the centre,“ she told reporters at the mission’s flagging off ceremony at the KL International Airport (KLIA) here yesterday.
The mission, which is scheduled to take place from December 18 to January 3, would include the Malaysian Army Corporal Siti Jumaidah Bensali, 34; Administrative and Diplomatic Officer at the Ministry of Home Affairs, Salehah Abu Nor, 33; and pharmacist Nurul Atiqah Tamarun, 31.
Sharifah Mazlina acted as a mentor and moderator. Also present at the flag off today was Aweta patron Datuk Hishammuddin Zaizi Tengku Azman Shah.
According to Sharifah Mazlina, the team would still go to the spot where the capsule was buried and take photographs with the new capsule to be brought along on the current mission to prove their effort to find and retrieve the capsule.
On the mission to plant the 2030 time capsule delivered by the Prime Minister called ‘Semangat Malaysia Boleh Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’, Sharifah Mazlina said the aspiration had to be abandoned after failing to obtain the approval of Antarctica.
She said they were informed recently that under the Antarctica Act, no objects were allowed to be buried in the area.
“However, they suggested that we take the capsule containing the mandate of the Prime Minister, Hishammuddin Zaizi and myself to have photographs taken upon our arrival at the South Pole before it is taken home,’’ she added. — Bernama