Call on Abdullah to give a public commitment that the entire report together with appendices of the Royal Police Commission of Inquiry would be made public the instant he received them from the Yang di Pertuan Agong next month
by Lim Kit Siang
(Parliament, Saturday): DAP calls on the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who is also the Minister for Internal Security, to give a public commitment that the entire report together with appendices of the Royal Commission to Enhance the Operations and Management of the Royal Malaysia Police would be made public the instant he received them from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong next month.
A member of the Royal Police Commission of Inquiry, Datuk A. Kadir Jasin, when attending the launching of Amnesty International's report entitled “Malaysia: Towards Human Rights-Based Policy” on Thursday, said that all relevant recommendations and suggestions made by the public, non-governmental organisations, professional bodies and political parties would be reflected in the report.
As the commission received about 1,000 submissions, complaints and feedback from various concerned parties, who is to know whether the final commission report would fully reflect these representations, unless the full report and all the public submissions in the form of appendices are available and accessible to the public?
The government has already once broken its promise to make public the interim commission report, which was submitted last August.
Despite the assurance given by the Deputy Internal Security Minister Datuk Noh Omar in Parliament last September that the government had nothing to hide and that he would extend me a copy, Noh later reneged on the undertaking by invoking the objection of the Royal Police Commission in insisting on its “confidentiality”.
Why did the Royal Police Commission insist on the “confidentiality” of its interim report and would it also insist on keeping its final report, together with its appendices, as confidential and secret as well?
Kadir’s statement therefore is no assurance that there would be full openness, accountability and transparency in the handling of the final report of the Royal Police Commission of Inquiry when it is submitted to the Yang di Pertuan Agong in the first week of May.
The Chairman of the Royal Police Commission, Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah, had said after presenting the commission interim report to the Yang di Pertuan Agong last August that the commission’s feedback from 26 public inquiries across the country and meetings with non-government organizations was that corruption existed at every level of the police force, and in particular in six areas, the commercial crimes division, narcotics department, logistics department, anti-vice, gambling and secret societies division and traffic police.
However, there was no way the Malaysian public, whether Parliamentarians or the civil society, could pass judgment on the commission interim report as it was never made public.
This denial syndrome, making a mockery of the very rationale for the establishment of the Royal Police Commission to restore public confidence by introducing far-reaching police reforms through the principles of openness, accountability, transparency and integrity, should not be repeated when the final report of the commission is presented to the government in the first week of May.
In Parliament on Wednesday, when the Deputy Internal Security Minister, Datuk Noh Omar was winding up the debate on the Internal Security Ministry in the Royal Address debate, I had pressed for a commitment that the final report of the Royal Police Commission of Inquiry would be made public in toto, together with the appendices, once it is submitted to the Yang di Pertuan Agong next month.
It is most regrettable and ominous that Noh Omar was not prepared to make any such commitment and chose instead to avoid the issue until the report had been presented by the Royal Police Commission – as if the government’s attitude on the full publication of the commission report will depend on whether its contents is deemed “favourable” or otherwise.
Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman