MP SPEAKS | Abdul Hamid Bador is doing what none of his 11 predecessors as inspector-general of police had dared to do in six decades – for the Malaysian police to be among the cleanest and most incorruptible government departments in the country and among the cleanest and most incorruptible police forces in the world.
His warning to the “men in blue” to sever ties with criminals before it is too late for them to repent is welcomed by all Malaysians who want to see the Malaysian police force to be among the world’s top police forces, which is efficient, professional, people-friendly and corruption-free - symbol of a New Malaysia.
Hamid Bador said that as long as the policemen had not been nabbed, “haven’t worn the orange jumpsuit yet”, there was time for them to disentangle themselves from the underworld.
He reminded all police personnel to remember the oath they had taken, swearing that they will uphold the law instead of getting involved in vices.
At the 'Op Selamat' event in conjunction with the Hari Raya Adilfiltri celebration in Kuala Lumpur, Hamid expressed confidence that corruption could be eradicated soon, adding that he had faith in his men.
He said: “If there are 500 dirty cops, there are 125,000 more good cops. I believe my men are good.
“Basically, they are good men so we have to set a good example from the top. I will set a good example from the top.”
The developments in the Malaysian police force in the past three weeks since the appointment of Hamid Bador as inspector-general of police has vindicated my expectation that the second year of the Pakatan Harapan government in Putrajaya will see more reforms and changes in the democratic governance of Malaysia.
The best part of the first year of the Harapan federal government after the historic decision of the 14th general election on May 9, last year, has been spent on finding out the scope and extent of the political, economic, educational, social, cultural and moral damages to Malaysia in heading towards the trajectory of a failed, rogue and kleptocratic state.
In the first year of the Harapan government, several important developments had taken place to pave the way for far-reaching institutional, political and democratic reforms in the subsequent years, such as the appointment of Hamid Bador as the top cop and the following appointments:
1) Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat as chief justice, taking over from Richard Malanjum who had retired on April 2;
2) Mohamad Ariff Md Yusof as speaker of Parliament;
3) Tommy Thomas as attorney-general;
·4) Azhar Azizan Harun, or better known as Art Harun, as chairperson and Azmi Sharon as deputy chairperson of the Election Commission;
5) Abdul Kassim Ahmad as director-general of National Centre for Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption;
6) Mohd Shukri Abdull as MACC chief commissioner;
7) Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus as Bank Negara Malaysia governor.
Significant progress made
Since Hamid Bador's appointment as IGP, significant developments have taken place to restore public confidence in the professionalism, efficiency and trustworthiness of the police force to reduce crime and the fear of crime. These include the following:
1) Police support for the establishment of an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), ending 15 years of police opposition, with the IPCMC Bill to be presented to Parliament at the end of the year.
2) Foiling of a terrorist plot by an Islamic State (IS) "wolf-pack” cell to attack non-Muslim houses of worship and entertainment centres around Kuala Lumpur during the first week of Ramadan.
3) New leads on fugitive financier and 1MDB scandal mastermind Jho Low’s whereabouts.
4) Police raid of the office of Deloitte Malaysia to help in police investigations into the 1MDB case.
5) Cabinet’s decision to establish a special committee or task force to reinvestigate the alleged enforced disappearance of pastor Raymond Koh and activist Amri Che Mat.
6) The IGP’s personal commitment to combat corruption in the police force.
There are still outstanding problems that have to be dealt with, which include:
1) Deaths in police custody.;
2) The death of Teoh Beng Hock while being questioned by the MACC.
3) Locating Prasana Diksa, who was abducted by her father Muhammad Riduan Abdullah a decade ago as an 11-month-old child and returning her to her mother in the long-running tragedy of M Indira Gandhi.
The Parliamentary Caucus on Governance and Institutional Reforms chaired by the MP for Port Dickson Anwar Ibrahim, will meet in Parliament next Tuesday, and on the agenda will be the review of the progress of the 125 recommendations of the Police Royal Commission chaired by former chief justice Mohamad Dzaiddin with the former inspector-general of police Hanif Omar as deputy chairperson.
These include recommendations to improve the welfare of the police such as special allowances for police personnel stationed in major cities in the Klang Valley to offset the higher costs of living faced by them; police motivation and commitment; police housing and adequate funding to maintain police premises.
LIM KIT SIANG is Iskandar Puteri MP.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.