RM38,000 for snooker centre licence?

A businessman claims that the amount he has to spend to get a licence from the local council is more than the capital needed to start his business in the first place.

(Free Malaysia Today) – A businessman is crying foul after being allegedly asked to fork out RM38,000 for a licence to operate a snooker centre here.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the vexed businessman told FMT that the licence cost more than the RM30,000 capital he had spent to open the centre.

Before opening the centre some four months ago, the businessman said he had met with several MPKJ (Kajang Municipal Council) officers regarding the licence.

However, the officers told him that MPKJ no longer issued licences for such premises.

“Snooker is an international game. I don’t have gambling machines and I don’t sell alcohol, so what is the problem with issuing a licence?” he asked.

Last month, the businessman said a MPKJ enforcement officer visited the centre and told him that the premises could qualify for a licence as it satisfied the stipulated conditions.

The officer had also introduced the businessman to a woman colleague who was purportedly in charge of licensing matters.

Secret society

According to the businessman, the woman then gave him the mobile number of a person called Tim Wong, whom she claimed was the person who oversaw gaming licences in MPKJ.

“When I called him, Wong told me that he represents a local snooker association but refused to state which one,” he said, adding that Wong had asked him to pay the RM38,000.

“He also told me there will be other charges, like RM2 per day for each snooker table. I am confused: is MPKJ a municipal council or a secret society collecting protection money from businessmen?” he asked.

A check later revealed that Wong operated a company called “Agensi Kampungku” which was not registered with the Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM).