I get the sneaking suspicion that before long we would be seeing every road in housing estates "closed" and manned by security guards.
Due to rising crime in neighbourhoods, residents fear for their safety and haveresorted to having security guards man the entrances and exits of the roads in their housing estates.
It used to be a few roads in a few housing estates or neighbourhoods. Now you see more and more pockets in housing areas with roads closed and manned by security guards.
Roads in these neighbourhoods are allowed to be closed, if about 90 per cent of the residents affected approve of the plan.
The police, it seems, are all for it. This is what I am unhappy about, and I'll tell you why.
But, first let me say that I do understand people's fear about intruders in their homes, and in broad daylight in some cases. Their family's safety is paramount.
The fear is real. It happened to your neighbour so you worry. A police report was lodged. But, before any arrests were made, another neighbour fell victim.
Now, I think it is okay to close up minor roads or cul-de-sacs that are hardly ever used by anyone else other than the residents. But if it is a major neighbourhood road, I think it is not fair to other residents.
These roads do not belong to the residents. they are public roads. The residents are not paying for the roads.
Yet, I fully understand their predicament. I am not trivialising their predicament, nor their safety.
The first time I got somewhat infuriated was some 10 years ago when residents around Jalan Setiapuspa (where Jakes Charbroiled Steak restaurant is located), "closed" up the road, disallowing people to park their cars on the embankments.
I thought it was not right.
Some years later, residents along Jalan Taman Pantai had the road closed. The road is a through road which I frequently used (and still do) to get home from Bangsar.
But, it was (and still is) closed from midnight to 6am. I thought that was ok.
I think people are really desperate and are left with little choice when it comes to safeguard their homes and families because they have given up on the police to take care of security and safety in their neighbourhoods.
But closing up their roads --- where and when will it end?
Here is where I am most unhappy with the police who should have the security and safety of neighbourhoods as their priority. Agreeing to roads being closed up certainly makes life a lot easier for them, I reckon. Perhaps, they're short on manpower.
You see, nothing much ever happens in all our neighbourhoods -- except for (day & night) burglary, robbery and snatchthefts. You see what I mean.
Last year, in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, houses along the same road were broken into -- within a short span of time apart.
I'm sure you have your own story to tell.
Now that the Home Ministry has worked to beef up the police with more voluntary personnel, let's hope that the police have more than enough officers and men to patrol our friendly neighbourhoods, and increase police presence.
Surely, now, keeping the neighbourhood safe, can be high on their agenda.
We cannot let our neighbourhoods turn into "no-drive zones".
Besides, when it has come to residents having to resort to closing up their neighbourhood roads and paying security companies to man them, it really reflects poorly on our police force.
It reminds me of private housing areas in some third world countries where political instability and sky-rocketing crime rates (among others) make it necessary to have guards at the gate.
Anyway, right now, the only ones happy about the current state of affairs, are the "syarikat-syarikat keselamatan".