A colek hawker in Kelantan has been fined RM50,000 for allegedly operating his stall beyond allowed hours, and thus, flouting Movement Control Order (MCO) standard operating procedures (SOPs)
Mohd Azizi Mohd Nor was fined on Sunday night, 25 April, the same day a burger hawker was also compounded the same amount for a similar offence in Kota Bharu.
According to Berita Harian, the 42-year-old hawker and his wife, Nik Norwati Nik Loh, run a stall selling colek, a type of Kelantanese rojak, out of their house in Kampung Chekok Tengah, Kota Bharu.
They were approached by several policemen at 11.20pm on Sunday, who without much questioning, wrote them a compound ticket of RM50,000 for working beyond the time limit.
"I was surprised and speechless after seeing the compound amount. It's hard to earn even RM100 a night by selling colek as we only run a tiny business in this village," Azizi told the Malay daily.
Azizi said they had already closed up the stall at 10pm, but he and his wife were still busy tidying up the kitchen
"When the police arrived, my stall was already closed and part of the lights were already turned off," he explained.
"Only the ones in the kitchen were on because my wife and I were cleaning up, and it took quite a long time."
"At the same time, I was also frying some keropok for my children because they have not slept yet," he said, as quoted by Malaysiakini.
The father of five, who works as a mechanic and also helps his wife run a mee celup stall in the daytime, said he cannot afford to pay the amount of the compound
The troubled father said his five children are still in school and he also has the responsibility of supporting three nephews.
"Don't talk about RM50,000, even if the fine was less than RM10,000, I still can't afford it. And because I have no other choice, I'd rather choose to go to jail," he said.
Caught in a standstill, Azizi has gone to a local district health office on Monday to appeal for a reduction. However, he has yet to get an answer.
"Since two nights ago, my wife and I have been unable to sleep, thinking about our fate. I hope someone can help us."
A burger hawker in Kota Bharu is also stuck in a quandary after being fined RM50,000 for running a stall outside his house: