Friday, March 24, 2006

IGP's solutions to dysfunctional police force?

What in the world is going on? We have Deputy Internal Security Minister Fu Ah Kiow confirming to reporters at Parliament House that the directive for policewomen to wear tudung (Muslim female headscarves) at official functions does not apply to all of them, contrary to what the IGP has said about the need for ‘uniformity'.

Now it seems that a police circular distributed to reporters in Parliament just recently, issued by Bukit Aman police headquarters and signed by none other than IGP Mohd Bakri Omar, stated that the “wearing tudung will highlight the Islamic value permeated in the force which is in line with the requirement of the religion”, and “the wearing of tudung for female police officers was an effort to enhance the image of the force”.

"... Islamic value permeated in the force ..."? A force that's already deemed by the Malaysian public to be so corrupt, abusive and unaccountable. Isn't the IGP insulting the values of Islam?

And as for police image, it's so bad that it'll take more than a tudung or a 'Saya Anti-Rasuah' badge to cover that up!

The circular stated that “enhancing the image of the police” was the core reason why policewomen regardless of ethnic and religious background, must wear tudung on certain formal occasions.

I suppose it's always useful to wave the Islamic banner in the symbolic form of the tudung to frighten people off from questioning him about his corrupt and abusive police force, while earning him brownie points from the hardcore elements of UMNO top political hierarchy.

Then the circular brought up the old nonsense of ‘uniformity’ again by stating “the order was issued to ensure the uniformity of all female police officers in wearing tudung at certain times and circumstances.”

I have already dispel the nonsense about the myth of ‘uniformity’ by reference to historical examples in my posting Policewomen forced to wear tudungs on parade!

Bakri went on to claim in the circular that the Home Ministry had agreed that the wearing of tudung was ‘compulsory’ for all female police officers regardless of race and religion in six forms of official functions including during march-past, graduation and during the national day.

With regards to the Home Ministry agreeing to his instructions on the wearing of tudung for all female police officers, regardless of race or religion, now either he’s exceeding his credibility or Deputy Minister Fu had.

But to be frank, I have more faith on the reliability of the IGP assertion because I don’t have much faith in a non-Muslim Minister having any authority in policy issuance on such matters, even over a mere public servant. We know that in Malaysia some ministers could be politically subsevient to some public servants.

If we read newspaper archives of the late ‘80s we would see a mere public servant, the secretary general of the Education Ministry, issuing a proselytizing policy [rightfully the prerogative - the policy, not the proselytization - of elected representatives of the people, namely the ministers] compelling non-Muslim students to hold their hands up in the Muslim mode of supplication during prayers on weekly school parades. The non-Muslim Deputy Ministers couldn’t do a single thing except perhaps commit suicide - pity they didn't, well, at least politically by resigning with honour.

The Education Minister, he who cannot be named, was conveniently not around when the civil servant issued that compulsion. When he returned in a timely fashion after the peak of the furor he glibly dismissed the insensitive prosetylization as one carrying universal values. I am not sure what eventually happened because by then I was too sick to continue reading through the archival files.

Anyway, back to the IGP and his messing around with his women officer’s clothing - here’s an IGP who believes that his solution to cure his dysfunctional corrupt police force is by making his officers wear ‘Saya Anti-Rasuah’ badges and his women officers the tudung - a kind of superficial double-barrel blast, the first being a cheap tacky (and bloody useless) publicity, while the second being the standard waving of the sensitive Islamic symbolism which may be very rarely questioned in Malaysia, and then, at great peril.

May merciful Allah swt save us from this man because I don't see the overhaul of his terrible police force going anywhere with him steering his ship stubbornly onto the rocks!

He is also the man who urged and brainwashed the UMNO MPs into rejecting the formation of Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), already a Prime Ministerial decision and the best solution to stop the rot in the police force from worsening.

[Note please: not stop the rot which is already there, but just to stop it from becoming rampantly worse].

If the PM doesn't get rid of the top layer of police officers like the IGP and his deputy, indeed may merciful Allah swt save us. The PM doesn't need the 'Saya Anti-Rasuah' badges nor tudung. He needs a bulldozer to scrape off the upper layer of sh*t that's in the police force and dump them quickly away.

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