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Police stand that it no longer objects to IPCMC most welcome and commendable  - Attorney-General should now present the long-delayed  IPCMC Bill in current meeting of Parliament


Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang  

, Friday) The announcement by the Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan that the police no longer objects to the setting up of the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) is most welcome and commendable.


Musa told a press conference after officiating at the Police Association AGM in Subang Jaya yesterday  that following a series of dialogues and discussions, the police  have unanimously agreed to support any proposal by the government.


He said: "We back whatever the government proposes in the best interest of the people and we will give our utmost loyalty in service."


This is the attitude which Parliament and the nation had expected the Police to adopt, as the “open revolt” staged by certain elements of the police force  in the past year in trying to hold the political and government leadership to ransom to scuttle the Royal Police Commission’s key recommendation on the IPCMC is not only misconceived and misguided, it is intolerable and unacceptable as a most dangerous and subversive  precedent in undermining the very basis of Cabinet government and parliamentary democracy – where an executive branch of government is trying to arm-twist the Cabinet and Parliament to do its bidding!


I can understand police  reservations and even unhappiness at the IPCMC proposal  in having a new external oversight mechanism to  check on police wrongdoings, as the police will be held to higher standards of public accountability for  their actions.


But if the Malaysian police aspires to become a world-class police service, it must be sensitive to new concepts of accountability, transparency and good governance and  be able to match international police “best practices” and benchmarks  where external oversight mechanisms to check on police wrongdoings are the rule rather than the exception.


There can be no dispute that the open “police revolt”  in the past year to derail and sabotage the establishment of the IPCMC, even trying to “play politics” by corralling political support of MPs by the most improper means, is a “black mark” in the history of the Malaysian police force.


The return to sanity of the police to withdraw all objection to the IPCMC and to put the interest of the people and nation above the interest of the police is laudable but it  must be a genuine and bona fide one.


It should not be  made as a quid pro quo because the police had extracted a secret  undertaking or assurance from the powers-that-be  that the IPCMC as envisaged by the Royal Police Commission as an external oversight mechanism to check and curb police wrongdoings would not be set up.


If this is the case, then the statement made by Musa that the Police no longer objects to the setting up of the IPCMC will be utterly meaningless and farcical.


As the saying goes, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating”, the test of Musa’s most welcome and commendable statement is in the open and active support of the police in the establishment and successful operations of the IPCMC.


The ball is now in the court of the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Gani Patail who should not procrastinate but be able to avail himself of the new atmosphere created by the positive and co-operative police attitude towards the IPCMC proposal to table the long-delayed IPCMC bill in the current meeting of Parliament.


I take Musa’s statement at its face value, that the police is not only no longer objecting to the establishment of the IPCMC, but will co-operate in its setting up.


In February this year, the police refused to have a meeting with DAP MPs to discuss the 125 recommendations of the Royal Police Commission although policing can only be truly effective if all stakeholders can play their respective roles. 


With the new positive police attitude, I will again write to ask for a dialogue between DAP MPs and police leadership in pursuit of  the common objective to create a clean, efficient, professional, human rights-sensitive world-class police service.



*  Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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