Tuesday, April 8, 2008

How a Sabahan boy ended up in Johor

I was having dinner with my parents the other day and somehow our conversation kinda drifted to the area of government jobs and the "avenues" of making money...

Apparently.. if you are in like Customs or Immigration there are so many grey areas you can step into that you can be a multi millionaire before you retire. True story coming up.

At this point my mom starts becoming proud of my dad <> and her eyes lights up.

Ehhh??? My Dad My Hero?

OK here is how it goes. My dad is seriously the most HONEST official in the PLANET. So honest in fact, that people still remember him even years after he has retired from official business.

He returns 1K red packets that the businessmen give out to all the chiefs during chinese new year.

He distributes the insanely huge hampers that we used to get to all the priests and nuns and friends.

He hits me for asking the businessmen that come a'bribing for toys but i still get em... though...^__^


The fire cracker business is very very big in Malaysia due to the fact that it is illegal but is a necessity during the New year and public holidays.

So one day this man who works for this other man who works for this MAIN MAN has already settled everything with all top brass. hands have been greased, illegal stuff has been given a permit by the police chief, the customs heads have been bribed clean.

All except my dad.

My hero.

So he comes along to the customs department, looking for the 2 top guys there, my dad and his boss. Apparently the top guy has already been bribed so they want to bribe my dad too to keep things quiet.

So my dad goes into the boss room. This man whips out a briefcase full of cash and just SHOWS it to him.


In todays terms about 17 years on this sum would be a bout 150K

So they were like so sure my dad would fall into the plan and everything would be smooth.

My dad said no.

Like WTF!?!! NOOO?!

He scolded the boss and threatened to send the man to the police. What if the Internal Affairs found out? He was going to minute the entire case. Stop the release of firecrackers. Get the crackdown on everyone.

It was basically madness.

In the end the boss scolded my dad, " What else do YOU WANT?", and basically gave up. The man with the suitcase even went to the house thinking that my dad needed more privacy or something. Got chased out with a shotgun. gyabon!

The deal still went through cos the chief of customs back then was already in the system. So everything went hush hush. But my dad had a reputation now.


Too strict. Not part of the system. The nail that had to be beaten down. Annoyance.

And that was how my dad got "promoted" to Pasir Gudang, Johor.

Although, I never knew about it till now. Sadly I blamed my dad for the whole moving affair for a very long time...

I mean, think about it. Try being moved from a place where your best friend was a Malay and you could like eat together and chill together to a place where the culture was Malay for Malays and Chinese you can go die.

How about going to a public school which was 99.999999% Malay and everyone had a thing against Chinese. Hell, I am a sino Kadazan but they still couldn't see the difference.

First day in school, I got into my first serious fight with kids bigger than me.

"Oi sepet! balik Sabah makan babi la ko!". Learned to fight dirty. Step on their toes and hit their noses.

Although once they respected me we could become friends. But earning that respect, thats the hard part. I fought almost everyday in school to the point my mom began to get worried that I would be a delinquent.

Luckily, everything worked out in the end.

I learned a lot from the school of life.

P.S. Here's a little true fact about the art of bribery. True you may get to be a millionaire. True you will get rich and happy.

But only for a while. For you will have no peace of mind for the rest of your life.

Cos last chinese new year, I went to my Dad's number 3 man party. He was only like 55 but he looks like 70. Very bad health. Walking on a wheelchair. Wrinkles everywhere. His kids all gone bad. Wife divorced. But he had money. Still 50 bucks red packet.

I bet he never had a good night's sleep.

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