Chin (centre) with his PKKR Mongkos colleagues.

SERIAN: People’s Volunteer Corps (Rela) members, stationed at the Rela Community Service Centre (PKKR) Mongkos, Kampung Mujat here, want their shifts to be back to as before, namely four shifts with each shift comprising four members.

According to PKKR Mongkos chief Benjamin Chin, the change of shifts and number of members fixed by the state Rela headquarters, made them feel unsafe during patrols, especially from midnight until early morning.

“In the past, every time we did patrols, we had four members but now, with shifts being changed to eight, we are only allowed to patrol two people at a time.

“Moreover, we are unarmed, so every time we encounter Indonesians (more than two people) at ‘jalan tikus’ (illegal routes), we fear for our safety,” said Chin yesterday.

The change in hours also affected their monthly gross income, which saw the reduction in allowances (paid in terms of hours worked).

“Previously, our allowances could reach up to RM1,000 a month but now we get only RM700.

“Therefore, we really hope that the state headquarters can return the schedule to four shifts as before because some of us are responsible for many things,” said Chin, who also works with 15 other colleagues.

He said their situation seemed to be overlooked, and their hard work unappreciated by certain parties.

The service centre that they are currently using was built using their own funds and not equipped with any basic amenities such as water and washroom, and the walls have cracked.

“We have to go to the nearest resident’s house in order to use the washroom. Electric bills are being paid for by ourselves too.

“In 2018, we had applied for assistance from Kedup assemblyman Martin Ben but, there has been no response until now,” he elaborated.

PKKR Mongkos, set up in 2018 by the villagers, serves to curb illegal entry and smuggling activities from Kalimantan, Indonesia through the Mongkos and Mujat borders. A total of 16 Rela members from Kampung Mujat, Kampung Mongkos, Kampung Bunan, Kampung Terbat, Kampung Muara Ahi and Kampung Mapu are on duty at the centre.