TRADERS at the Pasir Pinji market are literally going to work in fear each morning.
Since last week, they have been the target of a gang of young men on motorcycles.
Yeoh Leong Choon @Yeoh Pin Chong, 70, ended up being RM30 poorer after being ambushed and robbed by two men on a motorcycle.
Describing the 4.45am incident on June 10, Yeoh said the two tailed him all the way from Jalan Bunga Raya to Jalan Sultan before stopping him near the market.
“I begged them not to harm me and offered them my money.
“Thankfully, they left after taking the money and my wallet.
“They claimed to have knives although I didn’t see any weapons on them,” he said.
According to Yeoh, the robbers were most likely in their 20s.
“I didn’t get to see their faces as they wore full-faced helmets,” he added.
Two days after the incident, Phang Swee Ming, who sells noodles near the market, was chased by a group of young motorists believed to be part of the same gang.
“There were six of them on three motorcycles. They tried to intercept me but luckily, I managed to get away.
“Ever since that day, I come to work in my car. I’m terrified of bumping into them again,” he said.
The 59-year-old trader says the police must act to apprehend those responsible.
“First and foremost, the job of the police is to look into the safety of the public.
“They should be looking out for us and not hide and wait near traffic light junctions for people to break traffic rules.
“We do not feel safe at all,” said Phang.
Ipoh Timur MP Thomas Su Keong Siong, who is assisting the traders, said a 66-year-old butcher was not as lucky as Yeoh and Phang.
“A day before Yeoh was robbed, the butcher and her daughter were stopped by the same gang near the market about 5am.
“The victim fell when the men kicked her motorcycle.
“She suffered lacerations all over her body and underwent minor surgery to remove foreign objects that entered her knee as a result of the fall,” said Su.
The woman, he added, has since been discharged from hospital and is recuperating.
“But she is deeply traumatised by the entire incident,” Su said.
Su said, when informed of the incidents Ipoh OCPD Asst Comm Sum Chang Keong promised to investigate the incidents.
The officer-in-charge of the Pasir Pinji police station has also met with him and the market traders to discuss the matter.
“At the same time, a group of market traders have also voiced their intentions to set up a safety committee, similar to that at the Bercham market.
“I will be glad to assist them in any way possible,” Su said.