Media Statement (2) by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 30th April 2010:
Call for Royal Commission of Inquiry headed by Tun Haniff Omar to investigate into the death of 14-year-old student Aminulrasyid and all cases of police shooting deaths since 2005
The Parliamentary Roundtable on 28thJuly last year on “A new IGP for a Safe Malaysia” which was endorsed by responsible and conscientious MPs and key pillars of civil society have been vindicated – that instead of becoming safer, the people of Shah Alam had to exclaim in pain, sorrow and anger “This is not Manchester or Los Angeles, this is bloody Malaysia” following the heinous police killing of 14-year-old Form III student Aminulrasyid Hamzah.
Last July, the two main reasons I had given why Tan Sri Musa Hassan should go without renewal of his tenure and a new IGP appointed have come back to haunt the country and people because of their prescience and validity, viz:
I had urged the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to emulate his father, the second Prime Minister Tun Razak to appoint a new Inspector-General of Police still with four or five years of service brimming with ideas to plan out and implement police reforms instead of the current practice of appointing senior police officers left with one or two years’ service more interested about post-retirement arrangements but my advice fell on deaf ears.
The terrible faux pas by Musa yesterday, threatening that he would call the police off the streets and stop enforcing the law, has proven the colossal mistake in extending his appointment as IGP.
Musa deserves a place in the Guinness Book of Records as where else can we find a national police chief threatening to call off his men off the streets when this is the most fundamental duty of any police force in the world?
In fact, anyone who is prepared to consider even for a moment taking police off the streets is not fit the wear the badge of a police officer let alone be the No. 1 Policeman of the land.
Just for such an outrageous statement, which reflects a shocking state of mind, Musa should be sacked as IGP if not suspended immediately.
In an extraordinary attempt to deflect the national firestorm of protest and outrage at his threat that the police would down tools, Musa tried to blame the media, particularly the alternative media, for twisting what he had said earlier that day.
This was why Bernama came out with an online statement at 0013 hours in the early hours of this morning, but which compounded the offence when he repeated the threat that he would get the police to down tools.
This is what Musa said as reported by Bernama early this morning:
"Let the politicians say what they want but I want to know whether you want us to enforce the law or not?
"If not, I will ask my men not to stop dangerous drivers or act against illegal racers," he reiterated a statement made this morning.
What a stupid question the IGP had asked. Of course, Malaysians want the police to uphold and enforce the law but this is no licence for trigger-happy shooting and killing of Aminulrasyid, 14-year-old student in Shah Alam in the early hours of Monday morning this week.
While on this, can the IGP explain why the police leadership had applied double standards in enforcing the law – one law for the rich, wealthy and powerful while another law for the poor and ordinary rakyat?
The Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammudin Hassim must resolve the national crisis of confidence in the police compounded by Musa’s threat of the possibility of the police downing tools regardless of the people’s safety and national security.
The IGP is paid by the people and the country cannot allow anyone, even the IGP, to hold the nation to ransom.
This is a test whether Hishammuddin can be a strong Home Minister vis-à-vis a recalcitrant IGP.
If Hashim is too weak a Home Minister, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak must step in as there can be no place in the Najib administration for an IGP who publicly slaps the Prime Minister in the face by rubbishing the Najib slogan of “People First, Performance Now”.
As a first step to restore public confidence from the IGP faux pas, the Cabinet should hold an emergency meeting to establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry headed by the longest-serving IGP, Tun Haniff Omar to investigate into the death of 14-year-old student Aminulrasyid and all cases of police shooting deaths since 2005.
The Haniff Omar Royal Commission of Inquiry should inquire into all cases of tragic police shootings, like the case of single-mother Norizan Salleh, 29, who was shot five times after a car chase in Kuala Lumpur in February.
It has been reported that there was an annual average of some 40 people fatally shot by the police in Malaysia when in England and Wales, there were only five deaths by police shootings per year, on average, in the last decade.
The Haniff Omar Royal Commission of Inquiry should come out with recommendations to end such high rate of fatal police shootings so that no Malaysian would have further cause to exclaim with pain, sorrow and despair: “This is not Manchester or Los Angeles, this is bloody Malaysia!”
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor