I wish to refer to an article in The Sun (front page) dated April 19, 2010 titled “Malaysian stranded in Paris plead for help” in which it was reported that “seven Malaysian in Paris who are stranded following flight cancellations because of a huge cloud of volcanic ash are pleading for help from Malaysia Embassy in Paris”, but were told by an embassy staff that “the embassy can only help to give information and do not have the budget to help or have facilities to provide accommodation for anyone” Such an answer coming from a Malaysian Embassy staff is lame, stupid, unconcern, lazy, and it is obvious that the staff lack the sense of responsibility and initiative. If this is the sort of people we have working in our Malaysian Embassies overseas, then I think they don't deserve to be where they are.
I wish to recall an incident that was told to me sometimes in the 80's that occurred at the Malaysian Embassy in Pakistan. The story related to me was that a group of Malaysian students had just arrived came to the embassy to report their presence to the officer in-charge of the Students Department. Being new to the place and on-transit to their colleges, these students naturally were expecting some form of assistance, mainly in the form of a temporary accommodation and some meals from the embassy. But such expectations were not to be, and they were left to fend on their own. And not knowing what to do and where to go, they rested at the garage of the embassy. This incident came to the notice of the Defence Attache who took pity for these young boys and took them all to his house to be fed and rested.
I am somewhat fortunate that when my son proceeded for his tertiary studies in Camberra, Australia in the early 90's, the Defence Attache at the Malaysian Embassy then was a colleague of mine. He had no qualms about taking my son to his house and feeding him until my son could find a house for rent close to the university. I am told that the Defence Attache has been doing this all along purely out of a sense of responsibility and being passionate about wanting to help others, especially new students who he treats like his own.
And in the case of the stranded Malaysians in Paris that I have related above, I would have thought that the embassy staff could have been more responsible by accepting and offering the stranded Malaysians a temporary resting place in the embassy itself (why not), or in the homes of some other Malaysian staffs. Don't tell me that the embassy staffs are all renting in just a one bedroom home and are too poor to even offer them food. Don't tell me that the Ambassador is too busy to even lift a finger to help. I am quite sure he is being told about the plight of the stranded Malaysians and the least he could do is to offer them a place in his own house (even the garage can do). Surely there is enough space for the seven stranded Malaysians to rough it out in his house.
I am truly ashame that a staff of the Malaysian Embassy in Paris could not offer any assistance to other Malaysians in difficulties. I suppose having a retired Malaysian Chief of Defence Force as the Ambassador in Paris would not be a bad choice after all.
CRUSADE AGAINST CORRUPTION