A Chinese family bought some firecrackers at a stall on sidewalk located along a row of shoplots in a Chinese-majority area. Firecrackers are banned in Malaysia and for some reasons the exotic toys were particularly hard to find this year. Their children happily took out some of the firecrackers out of the plastic bag as they walked to their car.
Suddenly, out of nowhere, two enforcement officers stopped them and told the Chinese family that they had committed an offence for possessing banned firecrackers. Shocked and terrified, the family told the officers that they had just bought it from a stall nearby. If the firecrackers were illegal, how could the stall allowed to operate – argued the father.
The enforcement officers directed to be shown the stall. At the stall, the operators told the authorities that “semua sudah bayar (everything has been paid)”, pointing to the green-coloured cloth decorating the stall table. Suddenly, the officers smiled and walked away. Later, the stall operators told his customers that should they ever approached by officers, just say “stall with green-coloured cloth”.
Now, if a stall operator could easily bribe Malaysian authorities to close both eyes on the sale of illegal firecrackers, imagine how could owners of entertainment centre – gambling, massage, prostitution, drugs and whatnot – disguised as recreation and sports clubs operate their illegal activities for years under the nose of the authorities. The answer: corruption.
Notorious Red Shirts leader Jamal Yunos and nine of his followers were arrested last Thursday for gang robbery and trespass at an entertainment outlet. Police were investigating him under Section 395 of the Penal Code for gang robbery, which carries a sentence of up to 20 years’ jail, or a whipping, or both, upon conviction.
A mobster for rent, Mr. Jamal was a Form-5 dropout who used to be a burger seller at Sentul and a drug-pusher. But he was also one of Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak’s favourite thugs to do all sort of dirty jobs – intimidating, beating, vandalizing and whatnot. Because Jamal belongs to the inner circle of Najib, he isn’t expected to be sent to jail for his gangsterism.
The fact that he was given an early release yesterday (original remand order was until today, Feb 7) means the Sungai Besar UMNO division chief was unfairly accorded a special privilege by the authorities. In addition, plainclothes policemen had surrounded his house since 12.30pm on Feb 2 but they only made the arrest at 3pm, after rounds of negotiation.
The drama started after the Sabak Bernam district council (MBSB) demolished his hotel and resort in Sekinchan. It was a long overdue operation by Selangor state government considering the resort was operating without a valid license for years. Jamal later protested by wearing only towels guarding his modesty at the entrance of Selangor Chief Minister’s office.
Thereafter, Jamal and his gang went on a vengeance crusade of raiding illegal gambling dens and entertainment centres which he claimed were operating without licences since December last year. Prior to the demolishing of his resort, Jamal was given a bloody nose by plainclothes policemen who were irritated and frustrated with his stunts.
Although this is not the first time Jamal has been arrested, this is perhaps the first time the police was serious about teaching him a lesson. Unlike the previous arrest where it was related to Bersih 5 rally of which he was sponsored by Najib administration to counter the oppositions and critics of the government, this time it was about his personal vendetta.
Apparently, Jamal was arrested over his raids on gambling dens in Taman Kosas, Ampang on Dec 29 last year. Additionally, the owners of an entertainment centre in Sekinchan have lodged a police report claiming that several items from the outlet had gone missing after Jamal and his men had raided the place. But they are all illegal operators, are they not?
Obviously, those gambling operators were conducting illegal activities. So, how dare the owners of illegal gambling made police reports resulting in Jamal’s arrest? Strangely, the illegal operators could easily complain about their missing valuables and the police obediently arrested a powerful UMNO chief Jamal. It appears Jamal had bite off more than he can chew.
First of all, this proves that illegal operators, from firecrackers to sophisticated gambling machines, are protected and allowed to operate as long as money changes hands. Because the authorities have been paid, nobody, including political party menace such as Jamal to Prime Minister Najib Razak, is powerful enough to break the rice bowls of the corrupt authorities.
Secondly, as a gangster himself, Mr. Jamal should know better than anybody else that raiding gambling dens protected by authorities and other gangsters is like declaring a war on both the “white and black worlds”. It was like asking to be chopped off by the undergrounds. A gangland turf war at Sun Complex in 2014 saw grenades being thrown at each other like hamburgers.
He knew the consequences but he did it anyway. Why? Gangster Jamal, aligned to Selangor UMNO liaison committee chief Noh Omar, another big time gangster, was actually using “raiding illegal gambling dens” as an excuse to establish and redraw the gangland territories – for themselves. Both Jamal Yunos and Noh Omar know nuts about doing legitimate business.
Jamal’s business ventures in restaurant (Restoran Ikan Bakar Sekinchan) and reconditioned luxury car sales (IBM Automobiles) suffer huge losses due to over-pricing. Noh’s prawn farming project in Tanjung Karang secured through abuse of power while serving as Agriculture and Agro-based Industries Minister isn’t as lucrative as gambling.
However, it’s a known fact that whoever controls the Ministry of Home Affairs controls the police hence the enforcement authorities. Yes, the ambitious gangster Noh Omar, who is crazily sucking up to PM Najib, is gunning for the powerful ministry which is currently under Deputy Prime Minister Zahid Hamidi’s portfolio.
Mr. Noh Omar knew the federal opposition coalition presently controlling the Selangor state could lose after the next 14th nationwide general election. He wanted to become the next powerful Selangor Chief Minister (Menteri Besar). If he couldn’t get that, he would very much like the Ministry of Home Affairs. Either way, he gets to control the mouth-watering illegal businesses in Selangor.
Jamal is Noh’s errand boy to do the dirty work of raiding (and hopefully) and securing new gangland territories. In turns, Noh is Najib’s errand boy to do the dirty work of challenging ambitious Deputy Prime Minister Zahid Hamidi. Najib is looking for an opportunity to promote his own cousin Hishammuddin Hussein. That’s why Najib and Zahid do not see eye to eye.