(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): The resignation of Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Noor as Inspector-General of Police to assume full responsibility for injuries suffered by former deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim while in police custody would have been an honourable one if it had been made three-and-a-half months ago the instant he discovered about the lawless conduct in the very inner sanctum of the police high command.
After the long delays and denials of police responsibility, and even getting the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad to make the outrageous remarks that Anwar’s injuries may have been self-inflicted (for which Mahathir has still to graciously apologise publicly), Rahim Noor’s resignation takes on an ignominous hue.
Why must Rahim Noor wait until a very unsatisfactory investigation report by a junior police officer, and the Attorney-General’s statement, to submit his resignation?
In any event, Rahim Noor’s resignation did not address the real issues as to the identity of the culprits responsible for Anwar’s "black eye" and other injuries while under police custody.
Public confidence would suffer another grievious blow if Malaysians and the international community are made to feel that Rahim Noor’s resignation is just an excuse for a cover-up and the ending of all investigations into the police beatings of Anwar while in police custody.
The resignation should reinforce the urgent need for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to conduct public investigations into the scandal of Anwar Ibrahim’s "black eye" and other injuries while in the inner sanctum of police high command at Bukit Aman to restore public confidence in the institutions of government in Malaysia.
The first step towards the restoration of public confidence in the institutions of government in Malaysia is for the Prime Minister to announce the establishment of a Royal Commission of Inquiry, and to consult the Opposition on the composition of the Royal Commission of Inquiry so that its membership can command undoubted national and international respect and acceptability.