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Satay sales good but only during MRT promo period, say staff

 | November 18, 2017

Workers at a satay restaurant say sales dropped back to normal once the discounted fare period ended on August 31.


KAJANG: Jalan Kelab at Bandar Kajang can be taken for a ghost town if not for the few customers seated at rectangular wooden tables in the Sate Kajang Hj Samuri restaurant with waiters milling about.

The empty roads and near-deafening silence save for the occasional passing of a train overhead appear to contradict Prime Minister Najib Razak’s recent claim that satay sales at the restaurant were on the rise due to the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) project that passes through the area.

During FMT’s visit to the restaurant, the air was heavy with the smell of wet asphalt and smoke from the satay spit as the skies cleared from a heavy downpour.

Granted, it was only 4.30pm, so the lack of a buzz could have been attributed to the fact that it was still office hours.

“Not many people come during the weekdays, maybe because they are working. But they will start to come at night.

“Many people also come on weekends, especially with their families,” one of the waiters told FMT.

However, his senior co-worker disagreed, saying that to his observation, the restaurant was only crowded when rides on the MRT were discounted. The promotion period ended Aug 31.

Shaking his head, he said there was a big difference in the crowds after the 50% discount period on tickets ended.

“During the first week of the MRT offer, we got many customers, mostly those who came down here after crossing the road from the Stadium Kajang station.

“Sales were good during the weekends, and even on weekdays. There would often be long queues at the counters, and some even had to wait their turn to get into the restaurant.

“But after the discount ended, sales went back to normal,” he said, gesturing around him at the many empty tables.

Although the restaurant still has a fair number of customers during the weekends, weekdays are slow.

Both waiters spoke to FMT on condition of anonymity.

Sate Kajang Hj Samuri is part of a restaurant chain with 20 branches throughout Malaysia and more than 500 workers.

It offers a wide range of grilled meat including chicken, beef, tripe, liver and gizzard, fish, mutton and rabbit, all of which is served with its specialty peanut sauce and chilli oil.

During the opening of the second phase of the Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT, Najib announced a 50% discount on fares from July 18 to Aug 31.

Over half a million MRT, light rail transit (LRT), monorail and bus users were said to have benefited from the discount.


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