Saturday, 12 April 2014

Malaysia - Truly Asia

Due to the continuous expansion of developments in the federal territory of Kuala Lumpur and other states of Peninsula Malaysia, there is a never ending influx of migrant workers into the country, to the point of being chaotic as employers of all industries rush to recruit them frantically. Rules and regulations have been changed and revised repeatedly that agents of imported workers find it confusing and hard to comply. Countries like The Philippines and Indonesia have raised the tariff and command a better treatment in wages and conditions for their citizens before allowing them to seek employment in Malaysia. Very often we heard of freezing the arrival of foreign workers while terms are negotiated between the two nations or being disagreed upon.
Seeing a cow or bull's head, you'll know this is a shop serving the Muslims like Indonesians, Bangladeshi or Pakistani migrant workers for the beef it sells.
With decades of having the migrant workers coming into the country, Malaysian population rapidly grows, particularly from Indonesia. Being the same creed and breed, they become permanent residents and citizen much easily than others. The national polices of absorbing and assimilation of Indonesia workers are a friendly one. Right now there are about two million Indonesians who have found  and established homes in the country. And that explains why Malaysia's population shoots up dramatically to almost 30millions. Other migrant workers will usually leave when their permits of work expired, or when the projects they work on are completed. When they stop working, it means that they have no more accommodations too. Some would resort to criminal activities when they chose to overstay, when their hope of finding legitimate work failed. Crimes of theft, burglary, robbery, handbags snatching, rapes and molestation of women, drugs trafficking, money laundering, and even murder are quite rampant in the country. When the perpetrators were caught, the consequences would be very harsh and miserable to them. It was widely reported that the prison wardens would not be too kind to them. They would be deported out of the country after they served their time.
Photos of migrant workers are required in their work permits, personal identity documents and many application forms. So photo shops sprang up understandably.
The air ticket agency serves mainly the Burmese
(Myanmar) people in Kuala Lumpur.
Despite that, many foreign immigrants (mainly the Indonesian) will still try to sneak into the country by means of sea transport of boats, and by land through the northern part of Peninsula Malaysia via Thailand's border with Malaysia. Those are mainly the Burmese, Bangladeshi, Vietnamese and even Chinese nationalities (Unfortunately the Chinese mentioned here are mainly women folks).  There were sporadic cases where East Asians like Afghanistan and Iraqis arrived by air and eventually left in bad conditioned boats heading for Australia. Their ill-fated boats were either sunk with many deaths reported or the passengers were intercepted by the Indonesian or Australian marine authority. Other nationalities who posed as tourists of notoriety were the South American Columbians and some Philippine citizens, (pick pockets at the airports and in the cities), the Iranians and lots of Africans (drug mule carriers and peddlers). Most of the African Blacks arrived as students though many of them were already in their 30s; Nigerian men formed the biggest group among them. They spoke English well, and tried very hard to be suave and flamboyant. Many Malaysian lady lonely hearts fell into their charming trickery unwittingly and became partners of their illegal activities.
Indians form part of Malaysia's faithful citizens, culture and heritage. They have been in Malaysia over a century in history, when few Indonesians wanted to migrate into Malaysia Peninsula. Many Indians in the country are professionals; they are lawyers, doctors, accountants and engineers. They contribute greatly to Malaysia's nation building effort.  Many Indian Malaysians keep close connection with their kins in India. Some even have families there.
This enterprise advertises money transfer to India.
Free funeral service? no fear, there're always some kind people around to help.  Though Burmese are generally regarded as peaceful people, but brawls do occur and some ended up in murders.
Beauty saloon for Burmese ladies?
Maybe they serve other nationalities too.
Sadly the China Town aka as Petaling Street of Kuala Lumpur are run mainly by Bangladeshi people; the owners have chosen to act behind scenes, or just let out their stalls to them.
On a weekend or a particular public holiday, this part of Kuala Lumpur is flooded with hundreds of migrant workers of all nationalities. They need a break from their laborious routine works.
A group of Indian, Bangladeshi, and Indonesian construction workers queue to board the workers' bus that will take them to their hostels for a well-deserved rest for the day.
The daily work begins with queuing to clock in for
 work at the construction site.
The ubiquitous Indonesian fruits stall in KL City.
This one is at the famously popular Chow Kit Road.
Pretty maids in a row. Philippine maids gathered at
St John Catholic Church  for their weekly 
 prayer and social interaction.
Grocery mini-market caters specially for Burmese customers.

Burmese show time poster displays to update
the migrant workers what's chic and hic
 in the latest entertainment scenes.
Story written by
Alan CY Kok


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