LETTER | Pusat Komas is appalled by the recent statement issued by the Terengganu police chief Aidi Ismail who attributed the low crime rates in Terengganu to the state’s 97 percent Malay population when referring to the record of gangsterism in the state.
Pusat Komas asserts that it is improper for any parties, the government or the general public, to attribute any forms of crimes to a particular ethnic group. Even though the Terengganu’s police force success in combatting the issue of gangsterism in the state is highly commendable, the attribution of the increase and decrease of crime to a particular ethnic group is unjust and uncalled for.
It is imperative to note that in the rule of law, any forms of criminal activities are based on the type of crimes committed and not the ethnic group of the perpetrator.
Furthermore, it is important to note that the trend to attribute crimes to a particular ethnic group is not new. In fact, Pusat Komas had previously highlighted in its Malaysia Racial Discrimination Report that there has been an increasing trend and tendency of racializing crime in Malaysia.
Pusat Komas would like to express our grave concerns over the dangers that may prevail if the trend of racialising crime by the authorities continues as it may lead to the erosion of the social fabric that binds all Malaysians together. What is worse, it may contribute to widespread discrimination in the future.
As Malaysia is a country which upholds values in nation-building, it is essential for all parties to understand and appreciate that every Malaysians are an advocate of peace that reject any form of violent and criminal acts.
Hence, Pusat Komas urges all parties to stop racializing crime and invites everyone, especially the Terengganu police chief to be mindful and cautious by not attributing a particular ethnic group to any forms of crimes.
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