Rawang shootout - do you trust the PDRM in 'New Malaysia'? - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Saturday, September 21, 2019
Royal Malaysian Police
Malaysia : "If there are 500 dirty cops, there are 125,000 more good cops. I believe my men are good."- Abdul Hamid Bador, inspector-general of police
| I have no idea if there are more “good” cops in the PDRM than bad
ones. Then again it’s difficult defining police officers as “good” or
“bad” in any country. You give a person a badge, gun and authority over
people and you have a whole range of variables that makes definitions
like “good” or “bad” meaningless.
In Malaysia, it is worse. I give credit to Abdul Hamid Bador (photo below), the current inspector-general of police (IGP), for making it clear that he understands the problem. His comment on cops severing ties
with the criminal elements is better than what a former IGP said in
telling his men not to enforce the law when people demanded he
apologises for the tragic shooting of teenager Aminulrasyid Amzah.
I wrote about what I thought of the PDRM – in 'old Malaysia' - here.
In that article, I discussed the hubris of the PDRM when it came to
race relations and authority. We live in a country where the
fingerprints of the political class are all over the state security
apparatus. And by political class, I mean a race-based political class
who believes that the state security apparatus is an extension of their
racial and religious privileges.
"The police force has become a
culture of its own succoured by religion, racialism and handouts,
riddled with corruption and sharing a symbiotic relationship with the
criminal underclass of Malaysian society and beholden to political
masters who have always been engaged in protracted internal power
this idea that there a more “good” cops than “bad” ones is extremely
simplistic. What we are dealing with here is a culture. A toxic culture
enabled by a political class which uses the PDRM when it suits their
purposes and the reward for such allegiance is protecting them from
independent oversight. It is in this climate where flashpoint cases
reveal that the “bad” cops - even if fewer in number - have more sway
over the entire force than the cops who just want to carry out their
duties and get home safely.
In old Malaysia, we had a top cop from the state of Terengganu claiming that Malays were not involved
in the criminal gangs and the current Umno president Ahmad Zahid
Hamidi, who was then home minister, said in 2013, "What is the situation
of robbery victims, murder victims during shootings? Most of them are
our Malays. Most of them are our race,” he said.
"I think the best
way is that we no longer compromise with them. There is no need to give
them any more warning. If (we) get the evidence, (we) shoot first.” All
of which did not help Aminulrasyid, did it? In that case, a civil suit
judgment declared that then Selangor top cop was “guilty of public misfeasance for stating in a press conference a day after the shooting that the police found a machete in the car driven by Aminulrasyid.
statements) were meant to make right a wrong committed by one of their
officers, that is the first defendant (Corporal Jenain Subi). (He) tried
to say that they are justified in shooting the deceased because he is
someone who has (some) criminal elements, as there was purportedly a parang found in the car boot. But there was no proof of the existence of the parang."
whenever I read – and maybe this applies to you too – that the cops
have “discovered” weapons in a police shootout, my first instinct is to
shrug and go, “Yeah, sure you did.” How many times have we read that
the PDRM discovers weapons after a big shootout for which there are no
witnesses, only dead bodies?
But forget about the race-baiting
comments by politicians and by the various top cops from old Malaysia
who still serve in 'New Malaysia'. We are still dealing with an ethno-
and religious-centric police culture which apes the rhetoric of the
ethno- and religious-centric culture of the political class.
When Abdul Hamid goes on about people spreading
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) ideology (whatever that is)
this is, of course, the nonsense started by Perlis mufti Asri Zainul
Abidin (still want to build bridges with this man, DAP?), who claimed
that he saw the “hate” in Penang Deputy Chief Minister P Ramasamy’s eyes
which reminded him of the hate of the LTTE.
The reality is that Islamic extremist terrorist organisations or their sympathisers have launched attacks in the country – the Movida bombing
– and the state security apparatus has foiled attempts by such groups
to destabilise the peace of this country. Can the same be said of the
What of all those NGOs, political operatives and
celebrities who support Islamic organisations deemed “terrorists” by the
same countries who deemed the LTTE a terrorist organisation? Is the IGP
cracking down on them too?
duelling narratives in the recent Rawang shootings is something
Malaysians are used to. The family of the deceased have made serious allegations against the PDRM. Prima facie it would seem that the PDRM is lying when it comes to the alleged criminal history of V Janarthanan and his stay in this country.
there appears to be "guilt by association" when it comes to G
Thavaselvan whom the cops claim is a triad member, which I suppose means
that the cops were justified in their shooting. Remember what Zahid
said: "I think the best way is that we no longer compromise with them.
There is no need to give them any more warning. If (we) get the
evidence, (we) shoot first.”
Who knows how this case will turn
out? But we should know, right? We have seen these sort of cases before.
Nothing will change. And when I mean nothing will change, I mean that
police reform will be a low priority for this government because like
the old government, "criminals" who run the system know they need the
state security apparatus.
The official narrative will always be that good cops killed bad men.