Police chief’s revelations: Bar supports establishment of royal commission of inquiry

This nation desperately needs a properly empowered, independent, and external oversight body to investigate complaints against the police force

Hamid Bador - THE STAR

The Malaysian Bar is seriously concerned by the recent allegation by the Inspector General of Police Hamid Bador about the existence of a cartel within the police. 

According to the statement made by the inspector general, some young police officers are the masterminds behind this cartel, which seeks to bring him down and control the police force for its own purposes.

Such an allegation is shocking and seriously erodes public confidence in the police.

The Malaysian Bar therefore calls for an urgent investigation into the inspector general’s assertions through the establishment of an independent royal commission of inquiry to get to the bottom of the matter.

A transparent and independent investigation has to be instituted without delay to determine the veracity of the inspector general’s worrying claims and to ensure that the integrity of the police is preserved.

The failure to establish a royal commission will leave us with many unanswered questions. It may give rise to an inference that there are substantive problems within the police or that those in power have something to hide.

The allegation made by the inspector general has the unfortunate effect of casting aspersions on all members of the police – the vast majority of whom are law-abiding and doing their utmost to protect life and property.

Only a royal commission of inquiry will help clear the air and help restore public confidence in the many men and women in the police force.

An allegation of manoeuvrings within the most important agency trusted to uphold law and order reignites our long-held clarion call that this nation desperately needs a properly empowered, independent, and external oversight body to investigate complaints against the police force – the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC). 

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We take the view that the mooted Independent Police Conduct Commission does not have sufficient disciplinary authority to handle complaints against misbehaving police officers and falls far short of the kind of independent and external oversight body that this nation deserves. 

AG Kalidas is president of the Malaysian Bar

This piece is reproduced from here and has been edited for style only.

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