Who are the police to kid this time around? When the media highlights the inhumane “canine” treatment Ah Longs gave to 3 borrowers recently, the police again came under pressure from the public and organisations to get their act together to stop the evils of illegal moneylending. This led to a laughable “24-hour ultimatum” to Ah Longs to surrender and upon expiry, “the circulating of their photos by the media and an all out exercise to apprehend the Ah Longs”.
Let’s be clear about one thing. Ah Longs have been operating in this country far longer than most living Malaysian citizens. I stand corrected as I do not have any facts to back what I just said but if anyone else can show me I am wrong, my belief stands. And what have the police been doing about this? Ah Longs are brazen enough to leave their calling cards in postboxes and advertise their quick-lending service through bold-looking A4-sized posters adorning the neighbourhood trees. What have the police been doing about these leads? Perhaps, just perhaps, they don’t have sufficient evidence to prove a case beyond reasonable doubt against these holders of phone numbers prominently displayed that they have been involved in illegal moneylending. But if nothing has been fruitful so far, what has tilted the tide in the police’s favour this time around?
Have the police been suddenly been flushed with irrefutable evidence that these individuals (whose face we might now see pasted all over the place in competition with Ah Long posters) have been involved in illegal moneylending that they are willing to subject themselves (and the media) for possible defamation suits in case they fail to secure a conviction against these individuals in court? And why would it be difficult for our Special Branch to sniff out these Ah Longs considering their ability to track Singapore’s infamous fugitive Mas Selamat to a small unknown kampung in Johor?
The 24-hour ultimatum for Ah Longs to surrender was already a laughable exercise as no Ah Long in their right frame of mind would volunteer walking to the police station to tell the police “Here I am. I am an Ah Long. Please arrest me and charge me. I am sorry“. I just think the publishing of photographs of a few men (and possibly women?) alleged to be Ah Longs is a mere stinking publicity stunt by the police to satisfy the public’s once-again-outcry against the Ah Longs. “Show the public that we mean business“. Yeah, right!