Friday, April 21, 2006

Here we go again!

(Adam: SIGH. Here we go again!)

A few days ago I posted something in praise of those flers in blue especially the ones manning the Rakan Cop hotline. I said that the Polis Diraja Malaysia were at last doing something right. Many comment-ers posted to say that they too would appreciate an efficient police force that was proactive and people friendly. But being Malaysians some of the comment-ers were also quite sceptical about how long this new 'efficiency' would last before being consigned to the lock-up room and the keys thrown away.

Well guys, I hate to inform you that my elation and yours may indeed be shortlived.

Driving to work this morning I saw that a big tree branch had broken off one of the trees that lined the roads in my housing area. Worse it was hanging precariously on a single telephone wire that stretched across the road which happens to be the main thoroughfare in and out of Bukit Antarabangsa. Road users wanting to turn left into Jalan Wangsa 1 would have to pass under the wire and the very heavy branch both of which could come crashing down on unsuspecting victims and cause severe if not lethal damage.
(Photo taken at approximately 2.13 p.m. Notice the single strand of telephone wire that is holding the branch up.)

Remembering my experience with those wonderfully helpful people at Rakan Cop a few days ago, I called the number, 03 21159999. Again, the same cheerful attitude came on the other end of the line. Took down the details and said they would do something about it. Less than 3 minutes later I received a call. "Ah, Encik Patrick ah? Ini balai polis Ampang. Tadi you........" The Ampang policeman, as in the other day's experience, sounded irritated that he had to attend to me. Anyway, I repeated the whole thing to him and he gruffly indicated that he would do "something". I checked the time. It was 1059 hrs. That's 10.59 a.m. When I drove back after I finished my rehearsals.........the tree branch was still hanging there! The time was 1413 hrs. Or 2.13 p.m. Almost 3 hours and nothing had been done. I called Rakan Cop again. Same friendly answer. This time........."Oh. Masih ada sana ke?" Still there ah? "Tapi I da bagi tahu balai polis Ampang." So? Feeling a little exasperated I told the gentleman that perhaps the Ampang boys weren't the ones to call but instead if he could do all his rakan rakan cop a big favor, if he knew the number to call the Bomba boys to come and clear the dangerous mess. "Oh. Okay, okay, okay, okay." Ever notice how Malaysians think that by repeating words it is deemed to have convinced the other party that action has been taken? And that's where it's at as I type this post.

It would appear now that Rakan Cop, your Police Friend, is very glad to take your calls. Anytime. But it doesn't mean that they will do anything about it. Well, not all the time anyway.

Maybe, that Toyo fler's idea of a developed state just means that emergencies will take a little longer to resolve given that he and his people are now busy filtering water for the population of the developed state to drink.

Post script: I also noticed that many drivers and motorcyclists were cheerily driving under the branch without a care. Many of them were smiling as they went. "Oh look! A big, heavy branch hanging over the road on a single telephone wire . How quaint. Branch fall on me? Nah. It won't happen to me. Anyway, I've got a spare life in the wardrobe at home. What's the problem?"


ampraxius said...

Hmmm i'm guessing something had been done to jinx them i supposed. I actually prefer them to do all cabling underground since it is easier and much safer to maintain. Wouldn't it?

tgsherilamirah said...

it just proves, good things don't last long.

on the side note, i've been reading your blog for a couple of months and I love it. you show the world what malaysia REALLY is. simply malaysian indeed.

Sarah said...

Patrick:atleast they are still attending the calls unlike the 1 800 number pasted on all the commrcial vehicles..dial the number and you will hear"nombor yang..."

Guy in the glass said...

As in any organisation and process, it is as strong as its weakest link.
Just like many companies introduced IVR (Interactive Voice Response), thinking that would give a better image to the callers. It does not. If the rest of the company does not subscribe to what is being done, the problem is still there.
Rakan Cop is just the first step. There is still more to be done.

zee kin said...

Dear Patrick...

I thought that the rakan cop is meant for fighthing criminal....

If a tree branch falls over the telephone line in front of my house, i will use my Nokia to call the TELEKOM (TM)...

Well, if it falls over the electric wire (i don't know how to distinguish though) , i shall call the TNB using my house phone...

OR if both happens together, that i want to save my phone bill, just call to MPA (majlis pembandaran ampang)?

BUt why rakan cop...peculiar..

zee kin

patrickteoh said...

zee kin has brought up a good point. Is Rakan Cop ONLY for fighting crime? Maybe it is. But somehow the Police was the first thing that came to my mind to call when I saw that tree branch. Maybe it's a throwback to the days when our police flers were held in high regard by the citizens and were the first to respond to any emergency. You're right, zee kin, all those numbers you listed I could have called. I shall try that next time. But wait ah...when I call MPAJ nobody picks up the phone. When I call TNB they said that area is not under their jurisdiction but MPAJ. Okay, okay, okay...I still got Telekom which I haven't tried. But then ah...the least Rakan Cop can do is to say, "Encik, for these types of emergencies please call Bomba etc. and here is the number, thank you." To me, that's Rakan isn't it? Cop or otherwise.

Immigrnat in Canada, I must admit that I have only called that 1-800 number that's on the back of the commercial vehicles. I wanted to report a lorry that was belching black smoke. I got a machine too. I left my message. And guess what? Nothing happened.

zee kin said...

the local council is real sxxks.. oh patrick is the time to give them a real show in your blog..

1.) never pick up calls.. the mpsj didn't do anything regarding the malfunctioning traffic light in front of carrefour?


actually they have many rights, whereby they have a lot of control over manythings..

BUT what to do... we are all children who listen to them.. who dares to speak.. worst, who dares to allow "speak"? malaysian are coward. people above is coward to be opened for critism (sedition act, ISA, ops lalang etc) , and people below is also coward to speak.'

OK YOU PATRICK is somehow distinguished . Thanks for your bravery, thanks for speaking for us (the coward group)... aih...

don't call them lah... emn... try to get a dato title first... hehe


harnniann said...


I dont know whether this is an abuse of power but I let you judge. Last night while on my way to KLIA, when I reached the Tol queing to pay, one cop riding big bike stopped me and asked me to give way to a Proton Perdana Executive cutting que. The mirror of the Perdana was tinted so I didn't know who was inside it.

I saw the cop said something to the jurutol, and the jurutol let them go without paying any money. When it was my turn to pay, I asked the jurutol, "siapa kereta tu? kenapa tak payah beratur dan bayar?", she just said, "dia vip lar!"
"Saya juga VIP, saya bayar tiap tiap kali saya guna tol!" I shouted back jokingly.

Now I know, whenever we complain or make noise about Tol increase, these politician will not feel anything as they do not need to pay tol anyway! they are VIP remember?

And the cops are helping them to jump que... when the Gov is promoting "pemandu berhemah, jangan potong jalan" on radio and TV... what lar

patrickteoh said...

harnniann, I checked with a lawyer. The police flers only have the right to shoo you away if it is an emergency and if they are escorting some public servant. But then the law is stacked on their side. They can always say it is an emergency which is open to interpretation. So how?

harnniann said...

Shooing me away is one thing, not paying tol is another.

Is it officially confirmed that big time politicians do not need to pay tol?

If that's true, then we are barking at the wrong tree when we complain about tol hike. It won't affect them anyway.

lloydcheam said...

Interesting... who should we call under such circumstances?

Since the 'peace keeper' do not know what to do (even had receiving the calls from citizen), I think the better way of getting the problem solved is know who we should call and do it right away. Seriously, I would try calling the Bomba for this matter. Wonder, is the tree still there? And who has got the job done?

I mean, if the tree really falls down and cracked someone's bones, who should be responsible for it?
The police?
The Rakan Cop?
Or the Bomba?

'Who will be blamed vs. who should be responsible'.
Man, I would not want my kids to playing around having the tree hanging there. This matter also seriously reflects on how safe it is in our community just for us to be around. Is a morning walk safe enough? Is walking alone still okay? Come on, 'peace keeper', you guys are living in the same community as well, isn’t it right?

Maybe we ought to increase awareness among these 'peace keeper', get them more educated, get them more civilized! What do you guys think?

mob1900 said...

Remember the fler who repair pot-holes in Johor a weeks back? He did it after all the calls made by the public were ignored. I'm sure the Johor council peeps are having a ball eversince he had an accident, this is what happens when you become a good samaritan. I'm sure the Johor council peeps would gladly bill us millions of ringgit to repair these pot holes again.

Remember, the city council peeps are there to enjoy life, not to be in service of the rakyat.

*sarcasm courtesy of 22 years of TDM rule! =P Malaysia Bowling!