Honest cops would have no fear of the IPCMC - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Saturday, May 04, 2019
Malaysiakini : "It is hoped the government carries out its promise to set up the
IPCMC without any further delay, which I am certain will go down as one
of its greatest achievements."– Ramkarpal Singh
| Bukit Gelugor parliamentarian Ramkarpal Singh is correct. If Pakatan
Harapan discovers its cojones and sets up the Independent Police
Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), this will go down as one
of its greatest achievements, which frankly speaking is something the
Harapan regime needs. People like to concentrate on the cops who are attempting to block this move but what the Wang Kelian hearings have shown us is that police corruption and political complicity go hand in hand.
are not dealing with a single organism here. What we are dealing with
is a complex network of political, business and state security personnel
that is the basis of a black economy, dealing with everything from
narcotics to human trafficking.
The fears of the rank-and-file are
not really centred on the complex web of political patronage but rather
on the banal everyday dysfunction of the state security apparatus.
Three years ago, two siblings detailed the horror they experienced when
they were detained by the state security apparatus. You can read about here
and, of course, the feeble attempts by the police higher-ups for the
brothers to make a “police report” which they said would be investigated
in a fair and transparent manner.
is what corrupt cops fear most with an IPCMC. That the average citizen
will have an avenue to turn to if the state security apparatus abuses
them and an independent body will then investigate their claims. It is a
simple as that.
Well, okay, it is not as simple as that.
All these cops who allegedly have a problem with an independent body
“punishing” them are the kind of cops who believe that working without
oversight comes with the badge. They are also worried that other cops
who so far have been compliant to orders which they know are wrong or
are just afraid that they would lose their jobs if they do not follow
orders, would realise that now there is an independent body watching
As someone who has been a part of the state security
apparatus, I can tell you first-hand that personnel are not worried if
they know that their own will “punish” them. What they are afraid of are
“outsiders” poking their noses into their business. I get that some of
my comrades will not like this kind of talk but this is exactly why the
Harapan regime is getting pushback from the state security apparatus.
addition, let us not forget that race and religion are part and parcel
of the state security apparatus. Political parties and right-wing
pressure groups have always claimed that the Royal Malaysian Police
(PDRM) is a “Malay” institution and attacks against the state security
apparatus are an attack against the Malay community.
of course, is one of the numerous racial flashpoints in this country
because the majority of the non-Malays view the state security apparatus
as enablers to hegemonic Malay political structures. When then home
minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, for instance, advised a shoot-to-kill policy because the Malay community is normally the victims of crimes and the top Terengganu cop claims that Malays do not
participate in gang culture, what we have to understand is that any
attempt at oversight necessarily means confronting the racism and
bigotry that permeates these institutions.
The silver lining is
that honest cops would not have an issue with the IPCMC. In fact, they
would welcome it. They would welcome it because they are sick and tired
of always having to look over their shoulder. They would welcome it
because it offers protection against the various hierarchical power
structures that define the state security apparatus. Which brings
us, of course, to all these coddling statements by the prime minister
and home minister about “reassuring” the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM)
that they are not being targeted. The truth of the matter is that the
PDRM should be targeted. They should be held accountable for the deaths
in custody, the torture, the corruption, the dereliction of duty. If you
are an honest cop, you would have nothing to fear.
the government is doing is attempting to negotiate with the PDRM.
Attempting to demonstrate that they should not fear the IPCMC. The fact
is, if you are corrupt, you should fear the IPCMC. And let me tell you
something, the people who fear this independent commission are the
people who have something to hide.
the state attempts measures which would reform the state security
apparatus, organisations like the PDRM play the victim card. This, of
course, is something they learnt from their political masters. This is
an institution which gave us the Copgate affair.
The Cliff's Notes version here
– “Nowhere is this more clear than in the infamous Copgate affair,
where former Commercial Crime Investigation Department director Ramli
Yusuff exposed the criminal underworld links between alleged mobster Goh
Cheng Poh, or Tengku Goh, and the inspector-general of police then,
Musa Hassan. Musa served as IGP from 2006 to 2010. This case points to
the nexus between criminal enterprises, police collusions and political
When former prime minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi attempted
to set up the IPCMC, BN parliamentarians objected to the move and the
then Umno-owed Utusan Malaysia in an editorial wrote, "Although
(these objections) were from several parliamentarians, we believe they
are in line with the view of the majority of the rakyat." Abdullah
did not have the support of his political base when it came to this
issue. Do Mahathir and Harapan now have the political will and the
support of their bases to carry this out?