Monday, February 26, 2007

The "Eye on Malaysia" is attracting more than tourists.

Representatives from "charity homes" have been harassing visitors to the latest tourist attraction in the city.

Walking around Taman Tasik Titiwangsa, they solicit funds for their "causes" which include underprivileged children.

A New Straits Times survey showed these groups operate in different ways.

A teenager representing a training centre for special children in Cheras said he had strict orders to sell tubes of perfume at RM10 each and to refuse donations.

For this, he receives a 30 per cent commission from a private company that hired him.

"We have an authorisation letter to solicit funds through the sale of perfume but we are not allowed to collect donations," said the 17-year-old, who also issues receipts.

There was also a group handing out a "prayer book" containing excerpts from the Quran in return for a contribution. They, however, did not issue receipts.

Federal Territory MIC chief Senator M. Saravanan, who went for a ride with his family last Sunday, was approached by representatives from three organisations.

"One of them told me that receipts would be issued only if I donated RM10 while another didn’t issue any," he said.

He said such a practice was inappropriate, especially in an area frequented by tourists.

Sources from the City Hall enforcement unit said they had advised such people to leave but they kept returning.

"We can’t take any action against them but we will work with bodies like the Welfare Services Department to ensure they don’t harass the public," the source said.

Source : NST
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