Media Statement by Parliamentary
Opposition Leader and DAP MP for Ipoh Timur Lim Kit Siang in Ipoh on
Monday, 14th January 2008:
Call on all political parties to adopt “Good Cops, Safe Malaysia” as
top campaign theme in the forthcoming general election as Malaysians
have never been more unsafe because of endemic crime in 50-year history
During the weekend, together with Perak DAP State leaders, including
Perak DAP State Chairman and State Assemblyman for Sitiawan, Ngeh Koo
Ham, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat, M. Kula Segaran,
DAP Perak State Assembly representatives, Su Keong Siong (Pasir Pinji),
Seah Leong Peng (Pasir Bedamar), Keong Meng Seng (Menglembu), Chen Fook
Chye (Keranji), Hee Yit Fong (Jelapang), I made a hectic and grueling
two-day 14-place whistle-stop campaign of Perak state to launch “Good
Cops, Safe Malaysia” as a top campaign theme in the next general
election expected to be held within 60 days.
I found great resonance and support from Malaysians regardless of race,
religion, gender or age to this campaign theme as it struck a deep chord
among all Malaysians who have never felt more unsafe for themselves and
their loved ones in the nation’s 50-year history.
All Malaysians and political parties must regard the breakdown of law
and order and the endemic crime situation in the country as having
reached crisis proportion – where Malaysians have lost the twin
fundamental liberties to be free from crime and the fear of crime.
Everyday, Malaysians live in fear about the safety of themselves and
their loved ones, whether in the streets, public places or even in the
privacy of their homes.
The gravity of the crime and law-and-order crisis in the country was
further driven home by the latest crime statistics released by the
police on Wednesday, with the Prime Minister and Internal Security
Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi confessing that he was
“worried” about the rising crime index.
Abdullah pointed out that the number of serious crimes increased by
13.36 per cent nationwide last year, jumping from 44,016 cases in 2006
to 49,897 in 2006, with gang robbery without use of firearms galloping
by more than 159 per cent.
Further study of the crime statistics show a very grave picture of the
endemic crime and breakdown of law-and-order situation in the country in
the four years of Abdullah’s premiership.
49,897 27,107 119
Gang 1,920 7,067 5,147 268
Rape 1,471 3,177 1,706 116
Thus, although serious crimes have shot up by 13.4 per cent last year as
compared to the previous year, they have shot up by 119%, with gang
robbery without firearms leaping by 268% and rape by 116% in the four
years of Abdullah premiership from 2003 to 2007!
In the past four years, the incidence of rape had more than doubled from
a daily average of four women raped a day in 2003 to 8.5 cases last
It must be regarded as a national scandal and outrage, which is totally
unacceptable by all Malaysians, that the crime index had crashed through
the 200,000 barrier in 2007 to 224,298 cases – when the Royal Police
Commission had said in its report in 2005 that the crime index of
156,455 cases of crime for 2004 “seriously dented Malaysia’s reputation
as a safe country” and recommended an immediate reduction of the crime
index by 20 per cent in the next 12 months.
Instead of lower crime rate, the crime index had soared to reach endemic
proportions, with total crime index rising by 45%, violent crime
shooting up by 119%, gang robbery without firearms leaping by 268% and
rape hiking by 116% in the four years of Abdullah premiership from 2003
The Prime Minister has made a personal plea to the abductor to free
five-year-old Sharlinie Mohd Nashar and return her immediately and
safely to her family as everyone is praying that she would not meet with
the fate of eight-year-old Nurin Jazlin Jazimin who was abducted, raped
and murdered with her body subsequently abandoned in a sports bag near
where Sharlinie went missing in Taman Medan, Petaling Jaya.
All Malaysians fully support the Prime Minister’s call as the Malaysian
society has become very sick and rotten despite all the surface
progress, prosperity and piety that such dastardly crimes involving
innocent children have become the nightmare of parents.
However, while in full agreement with and understanding the sentiments
prompting the Prime Minister’s plea to the abductor to free Sharlinie
unharmed, Abdullah’s plea nonetheless raised legitimate public policy
questions as to whether it reflected a serious breakdown of
law-and-order and a failure by the government and the police to achieve
the three core policing objectives set by the Royal Police Commission,
the chief of which is to keep crime low!
If Malaysia is to have an efficient, competent and professional
world-class police force, it must be able to strike fear among the
criminals. The spectacle of the Prime Minister, who is also Internal
Security Minister responsible for the police force, issuing a plea to
the abductor of Sharlinie to be merciful and free her immediately,
reinforces the stereotype impression that in Malaysia it is the Police
and government who are in fear of the criminals when it should be the
other way round.
Malaysia cannot continue to allow a situation where criminals and
gangsters have an upper hand – with serious allegations of gangland
control of the police left unrebutted or challenged – while ordinary
Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, gender or age, are deprived of
their two fundamental rights to be free from crime and the fear of
It is for this reason that the DAP has decided to create Malaysian
political and electoral history by making low crime and law-and-order a
top election issue, which has never been the case in the past 11 general
However, I call on all political parties to adopt “Good Cops, Safe
Malaysia” as the common top campaign theme in the forthcoming general
election for two reasons:
• Malaysians have never been more
worried about personal safety and property security today as compared to
any period in the past 50 years or even in the past four years of the
Abdullah premiership; and
• The right to personal safety and life is the mother of all human
rights without which it is pointless to talk about development,
progress, prosperity or even all the other human rights – for without
life, all other human rights cease to have meaning.
Kit Siang, Parliamentary
Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic
Planning Commission Chairman