The Kid with a Songkok

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Last weekend, my girl bunny adjudicated for Malaysian Debate Open (MDO) which was held at Multimedia University (MMU), Melaka... So, I had to spend my Saturday alone since all of my friends were occupied... It shows how few friends I have... Dammit...

But I'm not gonna rant about how pathetic I felt on that day, drinking Hazelnut Hot Chocolate alone at Starbucks while marking a few of my students' assignments... (Well, the fact that I was drinking Hazelnut Hot Chocolate at Starbucks made it less pathetic...) 

While I was thinking about whether I should go catch a movie or just stay there at Starbucks until I rot out of boredom, a kid came to me... He was wearing songkok, an over-sized collared t-shirt which was tucked inside his worn out jeans and a pair of slippers... Owh, he had a sling bag and was holding a few books...

Kid: Abang, tolong saya... Saya kena jual buku ni kat abang...

Me: Buku apa dik?

Kid: Buku cerita... "Sang Buaya dan Sang Kancil"... Tolong la bang... RM2 je...

Me: Abang taknak beli buku ni... Tapi abang boleh bagi adik duit... 

I took two RM1 notes out of my wallet and gave them to him... At first, he hesitated, but then he took them... 

Kid: Abang ambil la buku ni... Saya kena habiskan semua... Ada banyak lagi... Abang beli la lagi...

Me: Takpe la dik... 

Kid: Tolong la bang... Kalau tak, saya kena pukul...

Me: Siapa yang nak pukul?

Before I got the chance to inquire more, the kid left in a hurry... As he turned his back away, I could see "Rumah Anak Yatim" written on the backside of his t-shirt... He joined a few other kids who were wearing the same t-shirts...

My guess was those kids fell victim to a illegal money collecting syndicate... If they fail to collect a certain amount of money in one day, they'll get beaten... 

A few months ago, my friend told me about the same thing... He and his family were having lunch at a restaurant and then a kid wearing a songkok came to them asking for donation... Besides the donation box, he was holding a piece of document proving that he was from a certain orphanage in Kedah... My friend's mother invited the kid to join them at the table and paid for his food... The next day, at the same restaurant, they met the kid again and wanted to buy him some food... However, the kid refused to accept the offer and he appeared to be scared... He said that he was beaten last night for accepting food from other people... He even pointed at the guy who beat him... The guy was standing not too far away from the restaurant, monitoring the kid... 

I pity the kids... I heard that most of them are just given one meal per day while they have to walk around from morning to late night...

This syndicate is kinda slick and I guess their number is rising... I'm sure u can see so many of those kind of kids walking around, selling goods and asking for donation... I wished that the authority can do something about this... Save the kids from being manipulated and abused... Lets do what we can to prevent this... Who knows, maybe those kids were kidnapped from somewhere... 


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