Rosli Mohd Saad,
third fatal victim of snatch-theft crime in five weeks, should be final
wake-up call for a genuine war against crime by the police and not just war
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Wednesday): Yesterday, Malaysians read in the morning press that a man had been charged in court for the murder of Chong Fee Cheng, 37, Nanyang Siang Pau clerk, a fatal victim of snatch-theft after a 36-hour coma. Chong, mother of two, was crossing the road in Taman Molek in Johore Bahru on June 12 when two motorcyclists grabbed her tote bag from behind, dragging her for several metres before she fell, hitting her head on the road.
The relief of Malaysians that the police authorities were beginning to show some results in its war against snatch theft was very short-lived as it vaporized this morning when they read of a third fatal victim of the snatch theft crime in five weeks, Rosli Mohd Saad, 36, who was killed in Ampang, Kuala Lumpur yesterday when he tried to catch a snatch thief. Just over a month ago, on 22nd May, Chin Wai Fung, 38, clerk in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur died when she fell victim to snatch-theft, the fourth time in 15 years in the same area.
In the past five years, there was an average of at least one death from snatch-theft a year, but this has escalated to three deaths in five weeks – highlighting the gravity of the crime wave in the country, and why Malaysians have lost their most precious and fundamental human rights – the right to personal safety and community security, and the freedom from crime and the fear of crime in the streets, public places and even the privacy of their homes.
Rosli Mohd Saad, third fatal victim of snatch-theft crime in five weeks, should be the final wake-up call for a genuine war against crime by the police and not just war through P.R. or public relations, with police trotting out statistics that there is a reduction in the incidence of crime in recent months – which have no co-relationship with the quantum jump in the sense of insecurity of the ordinary people in the streets, public places and the privacy of their homes.
The Cabinet was given a special briefing on the crime situation in the country last Wednesday, but there has been no perceptible improvement in the political will to declare an all-out war against crime. Instead, we read about plans to further burden the police, who are already hard-pressed to protect ordinary citizens from criminals, with relatively less important assignments as launching a man-hunt to arrest and prosecute over 5,000 18-year-olds “shirkers” who have not reported for the national service training special programme.
DAP calls on the Cabinet and the Police to ensure that the three recent fatal victims of snatch-thefts, Chin Wai Fung, Chong Fee Cheng and Rosli Mohd Saad have not died in vain and that police will really declare an all-out war against crime with increased police visibility and accessibility to ensure that there will not be another snatch-theft death.
Rosli should be commended for his bravery and public-spiritedness in going to the help of a snatch-theft victim, and in the process sacrificing his life.
* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader,
Member of Parliament for Ipoh Timor & DAP National Chairman