Where Shall I Go Next?

By Anthony Dylan

Lest we forget. We must remember the sacrifices made by the frontliners who put others before self during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. Every uniformed body took to assisting whatever they can to ensure those under lockdown are taken care of. Food supplies and the battle to suppress infection rates evolved into the goal for herd immunity.

As vaccinations become available, the focus then was to ensure as many eligible Malaysians and guests who include those who came to work here get vaccinated. We all saw how everyone worked together to get through the paces. Everyone had found their patience again. Queues were expected and many complied with what was required without much fuss.

I miss those times when humanity had a face. Everyone thought of nothing but to help. No one focused on who you were. But when we fast forward into this current time, we have had politicians think of nothing but to use the issue of race and religion yet again. Why do we even allow this to happen? This does no good other than creating divisiveness. Some politicians just need to be ignored and at best, to leave politics. Some even though nearing a century still think of nothing but to incite.

I had a passport which expired, and I had to renew it as I would be embarking on new journeys soon. I initially thought of doing it online but decided against trying the idea out. This was for 2 reasons. One was that you need to get your photo taken professionally and upload the soft copy on your own. This was not as easy as you would think. The 2nd reason was that you would wait about 3 days to get your physical passport collected at your chosen location after submission.

For online application, you can refer to the following website:https://imigresen-online.imi.gov.my

I decided that I wanted my passport on the same day and went ahead to plan to do a walk in. I had to sacrifice some sleep to wake up at 545am in the morning of one Saturday. I reached Menara Ikhlas in Putrajaya at 630am wearing a dark collared shirt and there were already about 25 people in front of me in queue. The office was on the 3rd floor, and they allowed batches of 10 to go up using the elevator. The 1st batch went up at about 755am. I got my number just after 8am and waited to be called. I just brought my National Identity Card and my expired passport.

I did not wait that long. I think it was about 830am when mine was called. I was asked to do an electronic thumb verification for both thumbs after I passed them my IC and expired passport. When the form was completed and printed out, they required my two inked thumbprints to confirm the renewal details. The gentleman at the counter then asked me to sit whilst they took my picture. I was then given my slip and same number to wait for the next call to make payment.

Immigration does not take cash and do not take e-wallets. They take only debit cards and credit cards as payment methods. It cost me RM200 for 5 years. Those 60 years and above would be charged RM100. I was called to pay within half an hour and asked to wait whilst they ready my new passport. I got my new passport after providing them with the slip. They returned my clipped expired passport too. I left the building at about 930am and had time for brunch in Subang Jaya.

The service provided by the government agencies has improved. They do try to make the process as smooth as possible. I have seen how they assisted those who were there for the first time. They took time to explain. I have also experienced similar with the Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara when I had to get an IC replacement because the IC broke when it was used at Jabatan Pengangkutan Jalan. Both were in Shah Alam. For such a replacement, you need to just call their number. You can get it in an hour and costs RM10. You can keep the following methods handy:

  • Through the website www.jpn.gov.my using the β€œMyKad Replacement System”; or
  • Phone-in service at 03-88808066 (valid for Malaysian applicants who do not need to change their photographs or particulars)

I do believe we should give the public service more credit as they have tried their best. It was also prevalent with the frontliners when times were tense. In fact, the private sector should start learning to improve their service. Even product knowledge is wanting with the private sector.

Where shall I go next? I have journeyed to many terrains and there are more I have yet to discover. I shall go to where life is celebrated as much as passion is appreciated with deep respect through understanding.

I have a few places I will be going within the next 6 months as I try to rediscover the beauty of simplicity, often made complicated by those who are engrossed in their own egos. Who knows, something will come by, providing an opportunity to bring betterment yet again to society. We need to rid ourselves from the temptation to hate and to create hate just to be in a position to do nothing but divide to rule.