‘LIGHT DISCIPLINARY ACTION AGAINST ERRANT COPS MUST END’
Reminders, cautions or one-day salary fine not enough to discipline them
HARIZ MOHD KUALA LUMPUR firstname.lastname@example.org
LIGHT punishment will not do for rogue members of the police force. Stronger punitive measures are needed to uphold discipline and integrity in the ranks, particularly among those who commit misconduct.
Reminders, cautions or oneday salary fines are not enough to discipline those who have been reprimanded for corruption, or abuse of power.
The Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) believes the force’s integrity will be compromised if rogue policemen are let off lightly.
Its chairman, Datuk Yaacob Md Sam, said the five-year Police Integrity Plan (2016-2020) was in place to deal with the issue.
Suspension of emoluments or salary increases, demotions or early retirement are among actions that can be taken.
“EAIC hopes that the police disciplinary arm takes a serious view of misconduct by its members, and metes out a hefty punishment to policemen found to have committed offences.
“This is so that the force’s discipline and integrity can be elevated. Light punishments would not work to discipline policemen and the force because offenders will not learn their lesson.
“Disciplinary issues, if not tackled at the early stage, would lead to more serious problems.” Yaacob was commenting on the crackdown against rogue policemen, which saw the federal police arresting 21 of its members under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 for working with drug syndicates.
A swoop by the Malaysian AntiCorruption Commission (MACC) last week saw more than 10 policemen, including two district police chiefs, nabbed for alleged involvement with a syndicate that protected illegal gaming and vice dens in Melaka.
The federal police had since announced it would revamp the Narcotics Department, while a reshuffle involving 15 policemen in Melaka was underway.
Yaacob, who is also a Court of Appeal judge, said the commission also suggested that police streamlined its discipline and integrity monitoring mechanism.
He said EAIC welcomed the action by Bukit Aman to replace officers at strategic posts, which needed to be filled quickly to ensure a continuity of management and policing works.
“We believe that with the replacement of officers, who are vetted to determine their suitability for each position, it would lift the spirit and integrity in the force.
“EAIC hopes the Police Integrity Plan launched in June last year, which lays out integrity enhancement programmes for the force, can be implemented aggressively.”
On the arrests of the Melaka police officers, Yaacob said he had a dialogue with state police chief Datuk Abdul Jalil Hassan and senior police officers during a working visit to the Melaka police headquarters on Tuesday.
He said the meeting was about strengthening integrity among policemen, and EAIC had voiced its full support to the state police to initiate more effective ways in monitoring the discipline of its enforcement officers and those who investigated reports lodged by the public.
Datuk Yaacob Md Sam