I returned last Sunday, to a wet Malaysia. My last trip home was in January, so it’s been about 3 months since. On returning home, I became troubled by one thing. Maybe because it was one of the first thing the client talked about or that I’d received a forward mail on a similar thing…. what am I going on about? The increasing crime rate in Malaysia. Now I don’t want to alarm all non-Malaysians reading this, because it is not as bad as in Thailand or Indonesia. But I’d forgotten how bad it has and can get.
The client cautioned against driving alone, because he knew of people who were ambushed and robbed by Mat Rempits. Coincidentally the next day, I received a forward mail from someone who had been attacked by Mat Rempits, in broad-daylight.
These stories have made me somewhat paranoid and then it struck me, maybe because of time spent in HK, i’ve become somewhat comfortable, confident and rather complacent with my safety. I know how easy it is to take things for granted, but the reality is I am now in a country that is probably not as safe as HK. This means that I should not be walking alone at night, should keep away from quiet and dark places, be armed with loud alarms and pepper spray and finally wear comfortable shoes, in case there is a need to run.
While in HK, i’d met a few foreigners who had visited Malaysia and had rather nasty experiences with being cheated by cabbies and robbed. Naturally I felt embarrassed but still tried to assure them that they are just plain unlucky. Thankfully so far, I haven’t been harmed for my money but stories of such violence are increasing. Can we hope for the Police to protect us? If not them, then who else? Will Malaysia end up like Mexico or Columbo, where people need to hire private security to ensure their safety?
This is my country – was it always like this or am I only now looking at it without the rose-tint glasses. Am I now, seeing what alot of foreigners experience when they visit Malaysia?