The Minister, the police chiefs and the scam called the IPCMC

The Minister, the police chiefs and the scam called the IPCMC

Many senior police officers are highly educated and have attended much training. So, I expect Sabah police chief Datuk Omar Mammah and Othman know that many police forces around the world are overseen by commissions such as the IPCMC (2005).

I expect Omar and Othman also know that the rakyat have a very low opinion of the police – not only with respect to “routine” misconduct such as absenteeism, drugs, gambling, indebtedness and so on, but also with respect to the disappearances of Amrri Che Mat, Pastor Raymond and so on.

Did they fail to say, in the presence of their staff, that there is already a discipline commission within the force which investigates, prosecutes and disciplines? Isn’t that what JIPS (the Internal Affairs department) does?

Did they fail to say that JIPS has failed, like similar bodies around the world? Did they fail to say that, around the world, such internal bodies have been replaced or augmented by independent commissions?

Did they fail to say that policing is a very special task, with cops having to use “good means” to reduce crime, enforce laws, respond to emergencies and conduct investigations?

Did they fail to say that cops are special because they carry arms and have powers to arrest and detain people and seize possessions? And therefore, they must be subject to special measures to curb the abuse of power by some cops, often at the behest of politicians? (Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador himself quit before because senior cops bowed to kleptocratic politicians.)

The police chiefs seem to have spoken as if the IPCMC has teeth. The truth is, the IPCMC is toothless and limbless. It is a scam to give the impression the police will be monitored like in the rest of the world, and the Minister and police chiefs know it. The pretence must stop.

I hope Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh and his committee will recognise and reject the scam.

Rama Ramanathan is an activist for Citizens Against Enforced Disappearances

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