Saturday, May 13, 2006


Looks like the proposal to set up the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) is kaput for this parliamentary session, thanks to the disingenuous lobbying of the IGP and the spineless PM, who having given the green light for its establishment, now keeps mum over this issue, back-pedalling furiously from his earlier promise, apart from a tentative red herring in the form of the more diluted alternative of an ombudsman.

The ombudsman concept will only work in a Western society where any refusal or defiance by the government to support and implement the ombudsman’s recommendations will see the ravenous press making mincemeat out of ministers or public servants. Here in Malaysia, the press role in monitoring police proprietary or general government public governance, or for that matter, the government’s concerns for public opinion are humongous jokes.

Only the IPCMC with serious independent powers can do the job of reining in an out-of-control police force.

Just note how the IGP had just arrogantly refused to even reply to a complaint by and a request for a meeting with the Bar Council over a case of police abuse of lawyers, despite the Council having written to him three times.

Bar Council VP Ambiga Sreenevasan highlighted the recent case of lawyer S Bala, who was detained by police while attempting to attend to his client at the Petaling Jaya police district headquarters - hoohah, it's that same notorious station again!

She reminded police that their interference into legal representation of a detained person is a serious matter. She said:

“The public can say that if even a lawyer is subjected to this (abuse of power), what more the ordinary citizen?”

“As far as the Bar Council and members of the Malaysian Bar are concerned, the IPCMC is the answer to this problem as investigations will be carried out quickly and they will be done in a transparent manner.”

But the IGP couldn’t and didn't give two hoots to the Bar Council for a meeting on this issue of police abuse and interference in due process of the law - hey, siapa raja? [who's boss?]. It is precisely this sort of arrogant non-accountability by a public servant (hahaha on the 'servant' part) that the police believe they can get away with anything, and they have, thus far!

Can anyone please tell me what the police has done so far about the zillions of complaints on police abuse and corruption? And what has the PM who is also Internal Security Minister done?

In fact, the arrogance and defiance of the IGP had known no bounds when he insubordinately sabotaged the PM’s IPCMC, by appealing directly to several UMNO backbenchers after he had demonstrated his Islamic credentials with his policewomen tudung fait accompli.

I am not sure what was it that those UMNO MPs saw or heard that convinced them to back the IGP against the PM in rejecting the IPCMC. Oh, by the way, in this case of backbenchers revolting against the PM's wishes, what about and where was the party discipline that the PM preached to Shahrir Samad?

Maybe those UMNO MPs believe that Ah Peh Chin Peng with his tongkat (walking stick) may yet conquer Malaysia without a vigilant police to deny those red communists? Maybe without the support of the police, they worry that the opposition could gain political ascendancy?

The Dewan Rakyat (Lower House) has sat for 34 days since March 13, and adjourned yesterday. So we won’t get to hear anything about the IPCMC for this parliamentary session as it will now miss the May 31 deadline stipulated by the Royal Police Commission to set the IPCMC into effect.

Yah, memang ada ‘Had’, memang ada ‘Duri’.*

* watch it mate, there's a 'limit' (to democracy and due process), and there are 'thorns' (for those clamouring for governance, transparency and accountability).

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