Sunday August 19, 2012
When country comes first
By ROYCE TAN
GEORGE TOWN: While the country’s Muslims celebrate a joyous Aidilfitri today, marine police Insp Nik Aziz Nik Mohamad, 36, will be spending the festive season in a patrol boat out in the Straits of Malacca.
“It will be just like any other normal days for us as we put the country above self,” said Insp Nik Aziz who serves with the marine police operation/intelligence department.
Being in the force for 14 years now, Insp Nik Aziz said there were times initially that his wife was disappointed as he was unable to return home for the festive season as duties call.
“Fortunately, my wife is more understanding now considering the nature of my job to safeguard our waters,” he said, adding that officers like him were allowed to go back to their hometown for Hari Raya once every three years.
“We start to miss our families during Ramadan. While others may return home to break fast with an assortment of dishes on the table, we will prepare some simple food here just enough to fill our stomach.”
He said one of his colleagues was also unable to return home to be with his wife who is expecting.
“This is sad but the feeling will slowly ebb as we celebrate with our fellow crew members on the boat,” he said.
Insp Nik Aziz and his team of marine policemen were out on their normal patrol rounds at Pulau Aman on the eve of Hari Raya Aidilfitri yesterday.
They shared some light moments with the villagers there and lent a helping hand to make dodol, lemang and also helped in lighting the oil lamps.
Deputy Supt Rosli Sufian will be joining his comrades out at sea.
“The only way we can connect with our families is through phone calls. Sometimes, we get to ‘balik kampung’ a few days before or after Hari Raya,” he said.