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Media Statement (2) by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 7th August 2009: 

Take a secret poll among the 2,000 top police officers from ASP upwards and an overwhelming majority will definitely vote for a new IGP

Will the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak, recommend to the Yang di Pertuan Agong another extension of tenure for Tan Sri Musa Hassan as Inspector-General of Police from next month?

I have said that there are over a hundred reasons why Musa should not have another extension of his tenure as IGP and nobody, whether Musa himself or the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, dare to throw a challenge to me to list out the 100 reasons to subject them to public scrutiny and judgment whether they are weighty and substantive enough to have a bearing on the decision as to who should be the No. 1 Policeman in the country from next month.

I have no personal axe to grind against Musa and am acting purely in the national interests, to roll back the tide of crime in the past five years which Musa had failed to do as well as to inject the Malaysian police force with the adrenaline, dynamism and a reinvigorated sense of purpose that only a new police chief could evoke in another attempt to scale the goal to become an efficient, incorruptible, professional world-class police force respected internationally for its competence, ability and success to fulfill the three core police functions to keep crime low, eradicate corruption and protect human rights.

I do not have a candidate to be the new IGP but I believe Malaysians as well as the 100,000-strong police force just cannot believe that the present batch of police leadership are so short of leadership material that the Prime Minister cannot find a single one from the topmost 100 Police officers of Deputy IGP, CPs, DCPs, SACs I and II to qualify to be the new IGP.

I have no doubt that if the issue of whether the country needs a new IGP is put to a referendum in the country or the police force, the result will be an overwhelming “yes” for a new IGP.

Of course, if there is a referendum among the top 2,000 police officers from ASP upwards, it would have to be a secret poll to get the true and authentic voice and vote of the overwhelming majority for a new IGP.

If more reasons are needed to buttress the case for a new IGP, they can be found in the various opinion polls on the Home Ministry website since last month – where 9,729 persons or 97% of 10,060 respondents polled from 20th to 28th July 2009 felt unsafe because of the high crime rate, with only 1% or 89 respondents felt safe and 2% or 242 respondents in the “uncertain” category.

In the same poll, 95% or 8,883 out of 9,319 respondents felt that the safety of the people was not guaranteed as compared to 3% or 248 respondents who felt it was still guaranteed, with 2% or 188 respondents in the “uncertain” category.

To the question whether the government has done its best to ensure that the safety of the people was at the best level, 94% or 8,743 out of 9,261 respondents replied in the negative; 2% or 185 respondents replied in the positive with 4% or 333 persons “uncertain”.

A total of 78% or 7,366 out of 9,406 respondents disagreed with the statement that crime was a global issue and that Malaysia was not the only country faced with the increasing crime rate, while 18% or 1,659 persons agreed with it, with 4% or 831 respondents “uncertain”.

How can the top police officer who had served for three years as IGP, including a two-year extension of his tenure, ask for a renewal as IGP with such disastrous record and abysmal vote of no confidence as illustrated by the Home Ministry’s own website polls?

The latest opinion poll on the Home Ministry website regarding the Internal Security Act, which went up on Wednesday night is another crippling vote of no confidence in Musa as IGP.

As at 1.30 pm today, a total of 6,614 people had participated in the poll, with 5,779 or 87% of the respondents dismiss it as “draconian law”, while 10% or 666 respondents accept it as “preventive law” with 3% or 169 persons “uncertain”.

From the poll, 91% or 6,117 out of 6,752 respondents want the ISA repealed, 9% or 610 respondents want it retained with amendments while 25 were “confused”.

On the question whether respondents were aware that “United States and Great Britain have their own preventive laws. ISA is one of the acts referred to by them”, 57% or 3,369 out of 5,932 respondents clicked “Yes, I know”, 40% or 2,365 respondents answered “This means nothing to me” with 3% or 198 respondents in the “I do not know” category.

All the Home Ministry website polls in the past weeks highlight one imperative – there must be a new start for the police force under a new Inspector General of Police to begin the concept of democratic policing and rewrite the very mission and vision of the police, not to be the protectors of the government regime but to be the friends and protectors of the people, the rights of citizens and the rule law, and ensure the safety and security of all.

*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor



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