http://dapmalaysia.org Forward Feedback
The Prime Minister is still in denial that corruption has become more prevalent since he became Prime Minister in 2003 will not help to stop corruption from spiralling out of control
by Lim Guan Eng
(Petaling Jaya, Friday): Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is still in denial that corruption in Malaysia has not declined but instead is acknowledged both nationally and internationally as been more prevalent since he became Prime Minister in 2003. Nothing is more damaging to Abdullah than the fact that Malaysia as ranked No. 37 when Abdullah became Prime Minister. Three years later Malaysia is ranked at No. 44, a drop of 7 places.
Abdullah's state of denial is counter-productive because such a closed mind will not admit the seriousness of the problem and thus fail to check corruption from spiralling out of control. The latest example of Abdullah's denial syndrome is that the police force has improved to clean up its image and is committed to fighting crime in the country.
Transparency International Malaysia had conducted a public survey from November 30 2006 to January 12 2007 that revealed both the public and corporate sector ranked the police as the lowest among government services for integrity and transparency. For Abdullah to deny this reality by saying that there are only a few bad hats when the majority of the police is good is to deny the widespread abuses of power especially abuse of the remand provisions under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code.
I have received complaints of defective urine drug tests that allows the police to use this provision to detain those who fail these urine tests. The urine drug tests are so inaccurate that even though who take cough medicine would be found positive. Those who wished to be released would have to pay.
As the second test to verify the accuracy of the tests require at least two weeks, many of those who do not wish to be in the lockups pay up even though they are innocent. The second drug urine tests after at least 2 weeks would show that they are clean. No action has been taken so far on complaints to the police about such abuses.
Another form of abuse is those caught for gambling. There are cases of gamblers who want to plead guilty being detained under section 117 and would only be released when they pay up. These gamblers do not understand why they need to be detained for a few nights when they have confessed and are willing to plead guilty.
On Abdullah's contention that the police has improved in fighting crime, why then has the crime index risen by 15.7% to 198,622 crimes in 2006 from 171,604 crimes reported in 2005. When Abdullah took over on October 31 2003 as Internal Security Minister, the 2003 national crime index was 156,315. Three years later the national crime index has risen by 27% or 42,307 cases to 198,622 in 2006. Instead of praising the police blindly, the Prime Minister should admit the police's failure and start brainstorming for new ideas how to stop rampant crime that has made our neighbourhood not safe to live, study and work.
* Lim Guan Eng, Secretary-General of DAP