MARCH 20 — Johor Bahru Small Business Association Chairman Chin Yoke Weng and his friends had travelled to Nanning, China on March 15 and five of them died due to carbon monoxide poisoning following a gas leak from a heater in their apartment.
Chin was an old friend of mine and he was active in the Johor Bahru Chinese community. He was a warm-hearted and obliging Chinese group leader and thus, his friends were extremely shocked and deeply sorry for his death.
Although it is regretful, we can do nothing to make him return. What we can do now is to call on the Chinese authorities to conduct an in-depth investigation to ferret out the culprit causing the tragedy and impose severe penalties to comfort the victims.
The tragedy also reminds us that we must always stay vigilant when staying in hostels to avoid the repetition of similar incidents.
Based on the information searched online, Nanning has been a gas leak high-risk area in recent years, particularly during cold weather seasons. In the first two months of this year alone, at least 41 gas leak incidents have been reported, claiming 10 lives.
According to local media, a gas leak incident in Pingxi, Nanning had killed a family of three in February last year. From January 1 to 6 in 2013 alone, 23 gas poisoning reports were received by its emergency centre in just six days, with five cases involving emergency hospitalisation and two death cases.
Regardless of who the victims are or which countries they are from, it is a pity as lives were taken just like that.
Life is precious. Malaysians going to Nanning must not neglect the fact of its frequent gas leak incidents. They must always beware of the invisible killer.
Meanwhile, the latest incident also exposed a Ponzi-like scam which is worthy of concern.
MCA public service and complaints bureau chief Jason Teoh Siew Hock said that Chin and his friends were on a “business trip” under the Nanning investment scheme.
The so-called get-rich-quick scheme has actually been exposed as a scam from three years ago. The scam went quiet for a while and was revived two years ago, attracting many Malaysians who are eager to get rich quickly.
There is no free lunch in the world. But Nanning, being described by Taiwan media as “a city like an upstart who got rich overnight”, has indeed developed rapidly, offering great business opportunities. Many people who were arranged to visit the city became easily persuaded and convinced, and they eventually became victims of the scam.
It is understood that not only flying tickets are provided, even accommodation and other expenses are also covered for those joining the “business trip”, attracting over a hundred of people to Nanning each day. Those on the trip will be arranged to attend “classes” after arriving in Nanning and the get-rich-quick dream makes many to be brainwashed easily. They will then call on their friends and relatives to join the scheme. However, what they do not know is, it is actually a scam and it will be too late when they awake and find the get-rich dream is actually a nightmare.
The get-rich-quick scams involving “World’s Future Richest Man” and the Surewin4u Group, as well as the Nanning investment scheme are all scams instead of legal businesses. They make money by recruiting new members and this time, they have indirectly killed five Malaysians!
When can those who have indulged in the fantasy of getting rich quickly actually awake from the dream? — Sin Chew Daily
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail Online.