Friday, February 16, 2024

Cleaning up police of petty corruption

Early in the month, media reported police officers - ASP rank and Sargeant - suspected of involvement in a burglary. We texted the concerned state CPO, who happen to be an old friend for more than 20 years, to express curiosity. 

In the past, there were unfair bust-up on the lower ranks for corruption. Knowing there were bigger sharks higher up the ranks and raking millions as protectors of illegal gambling untouched, thought it is unfair to parade the few bad apples in the media. Public tend to brush the whole police force with the same brush.  

The Datok expressed disappointment and felt bad karma beseiging  the police force. He reassured PDRM would do everything needed to address the situation. 

We pray they do because not all cases the cases reported by media is as bad as it seemed.  

One instance was an accident that took the life of a student in Ipoh. The officer was charged but it was to appease the angered public. However the case was still under investigation then. 

Yet to be confirmed, but it is believed friends of the student witnessed the incident and it was not the police officer from Kedah's fault.    

Nevertheless it is the recent bribery demand by a traffic police on an unsuspecting tourist that got video-ed and viraled by a tourist broke the camel's back. Police management is taking very seriously.

NST Leader wrote today: 

Good year for bad cops

February 16, 2024 @ 12:00am

This police reconstruction  cannot be understated, particularly the long-term ramifications that make or break a crime-busting institution. - NSTP file pic

WITH due respect to conscientious cops, it hasn't been a banner year for police conduct. In fact, it has been downright scandalous.

Police villainy has been depressingly thematic. Crimes — minor or major, white collar or violent, including murder, rape, robbery, scamming and extortion — were committed. Some were even allegedly caught red-handed on video for soliciting bribes.

An exasperated Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Razarudin Husain has had enough. There is little the IGP can do with the current flock of bad hats. But he can create future cops imbued with honesty, discipline, morality, verve and values.

Razarudin proposed ways to recruit, train and develop police officers. Here's how: recruits sit a Home Ministry recruitment profiling system test where successful candidates face oral interviews and undergo security vetting before attending religious modules for Muslims and moral modules for non-Muslims.

There is no guarantee that this produces good cops or whether they stay good for 10 or 20 years. As it stands, police officers begin their careers brimming with idealism.

But as the years go by, hardened by work horrors, brute realities of life and a shadowy environment, even the best can falter and be seduced by the dark side. In proposing the new process, the IGP could also launch an immediate and actionable mission: identify dirty cops but stop the practice of transferring them. It just doesn't work.

Instead, terminate not just their careers but also their extra-legal network, on the quiet if necessary, before they contaminate the force by roping in others.

The mission should flush out dirty cops, starting with rogues hiding behind their badges and station cells.

Also, take down the loftily perched, they who form cartels that protect their black ops while coddling with organised crime and corrupt political leaders to enrich themselves. Improve the force's wages and welfare to temper temptation and greed.

It won't be easy, but the IGP must convince the finance minister that a well-paid force is the beginning of a reformation and renaissance.

Other than that, Razarudin will need a crystal ball to envision how the new recruits will perform and mature long after he retires.

This police reconstruction cannot be understated, particularly the long-term ramifications that make or break a crime-busting institution. But try the IGP must, at least to curb the force from sliding to a point of no return, where the public won't trust and cooperate with the first line of security.

Petty bribery happened in the past but the stituation may have become more common. Recently, a raid on the Mini Dhaka revealed video viraled of police participating in the crackdown coercing money from the illegal immigrant petty traders. 

We have been an avid follower of the infamous Telegram group Edisi Siasat since its inception. One cannot totally believe all that was insinuated, nevertheless it is indicative that the situation has become endemic and the lower rank police is merely emulating their superiors. 

The fish rot from the head. Something need be done! 

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