(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): The Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi said on the first day of Hari Raya Open House that the Government does not intend to leave the post of the Inspector-General of Police vacant and it would be filled in a matter of time.
As the police is facing an unprecedented crisis of confidence both among the Malaysian people and the international community, the Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Norian Mai should be appointed the new Inspector-General of Police to start restoring public confidence in the professionalism and integrity of the police unless there are reasons to implicate him in the "black eye" scandal involving former Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who was assaulted while under police custody.
Norian Mai is now carrying out the duties of the IGP with the resignation of Tan Sri Rahim Noor after the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Mohtar Abdullah said the police must bear full responsibility for the injuries suffered by Anwar while under police custody.
However, Abdullah should realise that there would be no way for anyone to restore public confidence in the professionalism and integrity of the Royal Malaysian Police Force so long as Anwar’s "black eye" remain an unresolved mystery and a heinous crime without criminals.
For the sake of its own reputation, professionalism and integrity, the Police high command should collectively requisition the Prime Minister for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to send out an clear and unmistakable message to the nation and the world that the Royal Malaysian Police Force has nothing to hide and wants the full public inquiry into the police assault of Anwar and want the police person or persons responsible, regardless of rank or status, for the assault on Anwar to be charged in court and brought to justice.
Ten days ago, on 11th January 1999, the head of the Police Special Investigation Team assigned to the case of Anwar’s "black eye", City Criminal Investigation Department chief Senior Assistant Commissioner II Mat Zain Ibrahim said that further investigation involving recording statements from the police high command as directed by the Attorney-General would be completed within five days.
Five days have come and gone, and it is now ten days since Mat Zain made the statement.
Has the Police Special Investigation Team submited its final investigation findings to the Attorney-General and is Mohtar going to take another six weeks before taking any decision, as he did with the Special Investigation Team’s first report?
The investigation which had been completed by Mat Zain, together with other investigators unkown to the public, cannot be accepted as a satisfactory substitute for an independent investigation into Anwar’s black eye and other injuries while under police custody, for it offends every sense of justice and honour that an investigation into a crime committed in the very inner sanctum of the police high command at Bukit Aman should be conducted by the police itself - and by comparatively junior police officers whose name apart from Mat Zain cannot even be revealed!
The Attorney-General should submit all the investigation papers and findings by the Police Special Investigation Team to a Royal Commission of Inquiry specially set up to take over all investigations and to conduct a public hearing into the matter.